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Thriving vs. toxic relationships

today5 February 2024 33

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A healthy relationship is characterised by mutual respect, effective communication, trust, support, and shared values. On the other hand, an unhealthy relationship may involve control, manipulation, lack of trust, disrespect, and even emotional or physical abuse. Can you pinpoint the key signs in healthy and unhealthy relationships?

Toxic or Thriving: Spotting Healthy and Unhealthy Relationships

A healthy relationship is one where partners have shared values, interests, and goals, which help to foster a sense of connection and shared purpose. It is where both partners value and respect each other’s opinions, boundaries, and autonomy, are open and honest with one another and can resolve conflicts through respectful dialogue.

A relationship is healthy when trust is a foundation, and both partners feel safe being vulnerable to share their thoughts and feelings. It is also essential for there to be a desire and willingness to support each other’s goals, dreams, and growth. Provided that these do not cause harm to others.

Read: How to talk to your person about difficult things

An unhealthy relationship sees (one or both) partners consistently disrespect each other’s boundaries, opinions, or personal space. Where communication is characterised by frequent misunderstandings or a lack of openness. One partner exerts control over the other, making decisions without consultation or using manipulation tactics to get the upper hand. Infidelity is another sign.

There can be a consistent lack of trust, with suspicions, jealousy, or monitoring behaviours, and it is important to note that any form of emotional, verbal, or physical abuse present in the relationship is an automatic red flag. Relationships require intentionality, self-control, mutual respect and humility.

Let’s be a generation that takes holding the hearts of the people we claim to love seriously. Will you accept this challenge? Should you need to talk to someone, please contact our Free Counselling helpline. For more insight about relationships, tune in for Let’s Talk Relationships every weekday from 6 – 6:30 pm.

Written by Kabelo Milton.

The views expressed herein are those of the writer and not I Am Youth.


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