‘Thank you for taking care of yourself’

‘Thank you for taking care of yourself’ – That’s a sentence you’re bound to hear if you attend various workshops that have anything to do with touch or consent. However I have a big problem with it – so I explained why to someone recently.


Here’s (part of) an email I got the other day. I really appreciated this person asking me about using something they thought I had originated.

They wrote:
In [a certain training event]  we used “Thank you for taking care of yourself” and I understood that you came up with this sentence. I want to [certain project they want to do with that phrase] so I want to ask for your permission to use this phrase on [said project].


My reply:

nice to hear from you – you are so kind to ask me before starting your project.

however i am not the one who uses that. i’m not sure where it came from but it certainly is in wide use. i think it is one of those things that is so widely used (at least in the usa) that it no longer has a beginning 🙂

i actually really dislike that statement. here’s why. when you say ‘thank you’ it’s because someone has done something for you. but when someone states their wishes or boundaries – they didn’t do it for you, they did it for themselves. to act like they did it for you seems to me to be rather patronizing.

if you want to express that you are glad they did it, then just say you are glad they did it. they did not in fact do it for you. they did it for themselves.

anyway – thanks for asking. i do appreciate that you were considerate to ask me if that was mine. and have a great time with your project!

(what i did develop was the wheel of consent, so that is probably why someone attributed the idea to me.)

thanks, betty

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