What is a “healthy relationship” anyway?
Seriously.....what's a "healthy relationship?"
Everyone has different relationship needs, wants and values! But there are some things that are core to healthy, happy relationships - consent, communication and trust.
Consent is an important part of everything we do with others - not just sex. It is important that partners respect one another's boundaries (limits, needs, comforts) around time, privacy, and physical touch.
When disagreements happen, it is important to communicate kindly and clearly. Partners should share how they feel honestly. Partners should also focus on their own experiences, rather than pointing fingers or using blaming language. The goal should be to understand one another - not to win.
Trust is needed for a relationship to be healthy. It can take some time to build trust and that's normal! Trust can grow through consent and healthy communication with a partner.
The relationship spectrum below shows examples of healthy, unhealthy and abusive dating relationships. Thank you to loveisrespect.org for putting this together!
Relationship Green Flags
Signs that a relationship is healthy.
- Partners have equal decision making power.
- Partners respect and support one another's interests, hobbies and relationships.
- Partners feel like they can be themselves around one another.
- Partners talk openly and honestly about feelings and relationship challenges.
- Partners discuss and respect one another's boundaries.
- Partners support one another and build one another up.
- Partners are patient and do not pressure or manipulate.
- Partners trust one another.
Relationship Red Flags
Some signs that a relationship is unhealthy or abusive
- One partner makes all or most decisions.
- Partners spend all their time together and neglect other responsibilities, interests, and relationships.
- One or both partners feel like they need to walk on eggshells around the other.
- One or both partners feel like they can't be honest about their feelings.
- One or both partners are often jealous and distrustful.
- One or both partners use jealousy as an excuse to control who the other spends time with.
- One or both partners look through the other's private messages without permission.
- One or both partners are physically violent, threatening, or intimidating.
But back to consent...because we really can't talk about it enough!
Check out one of our favorite videos below for an easy to understand (and weirdly funny!) tutorial.