You can be compassionate and have great empathy for others, and still have strong personal boundaries. You deserve to have dignity and for others to treat you with respect.
Setting boundaries with people is not selfish. Loving yourself is not selfish.
We have been conditioned to say “yes” to people, when they are insistent with us. This is especially true for people who come from emotional abuse. But the person who is insistent about things that make you uncomfortable is not being loving to you.
Love those that are loving. Care for those who are capable of caring. I love Brene Brown and her work on vulnerability, shame and empathy. Sharing your strengths and your struggles with people is being vulnerable, and it can have a healing effect on others. But you have the right to have personal boundaries and you have the right to say NO to people about things.
You do not have to provide people with reasons that they agree are valid. If someone discounts your reality, then they are not being loving. You do not have to serve their agenda. Save your energy for those who are loving.
Brene Brown talks about the culture we live in which promotes shame for not being perfect enough, or for being the person that the media says we should be.