Relationships - Healthy and Unhealthy relationships
You can give your relationships a health check by thinking about some of the statements below.
Some relationships are healthy and some are unhealthy. Someone who loves you helps you feel good about yourself. Someone who controls you tells you what to do or how to behave isn’t helping you feel good about yourself.
Here are some factors in a healthy relationship:
- They tell you that you’re really great looking
- You can be yourself and you don’t have to pretend you’re someone you’re not
- You feel really good with them
- They make you feel really wanted
- They like your family
- When you are stressed out they listen and support you
- They like being seen with you
- You really like their friends and you feel relaxed and comfortable with them
Here are some factors in an unhealthy relationship:
- You know they’re not the partner you want but you think you can change them
- You stay with them because it’s better than being alone
- Getting physical together is the most important thing
- They make the decisions about where to go and what to do
- When you are with them you end up arguing all the time
- They’re always breaking up and you’re always having to make up again – and it’s always your fault
- They put you down and make fun of you
- You get embarrassed when you hang out in public
- You haven’t got time for anything or anyone else
- Whey you’re with their friends they ignore you or humiliate you
- You couldn’t talk about condoms or contraception, it would be too embarrassing
- They really get jealous when they see you talking to other people
- They say bad things about your family
- They tell you what to do and what to wear
- They tell people bad things about you that aren’t true – like how and when you have sex
If you’re in an unhealthy relationship, you can leave but you’re going to need support from family and friends to do. It might take you some time. Don’t give up on yourself. You are worth it!
What is love?
Two people feel good about themselves and each other
This is Love:
You have a good friendship, not just a physical relationship
- You have freedom to do your own thing
- You have time and space to see your friends
- You have your own interests
- Your opinions are respected
- You can disagree with each other
- You can go at your own pace, including sexually
- You make decisions together
- When you have an argument you can talk about it
- You have fun together
- You feel safe
- If you want to end the relationship, your decision is respected
Who can help?
You can talk to a parent or caregiver or another trusted adult. At school you could talk with a teacher you trust and like, the dean for your form year or a guidance counsellor.
There are organisations that can also help:
- Stopping Violence Services 0800 4SVSSVS (0800 478 778)
- Preventing Violence Crisis Line 0508 DVHELP (0508 384 357)
- Youthline 0800 376 633 (8am until midnight)
If you are in immediate danger call the police on 111. Remember you can call 111 from your cell phone even if you don’t have any credit on your phone.