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Feeling safe in your relationship

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Feeling safe

We each have the right to feel safe, valued and respected in our relationships. Spending time with someone you like should be fun, enjoyable and something that makes you feel good. However it is important to know that not all relationships you experience will necessarily be healthy ones.

Unhealthy relationships

People in relationships do not always agree with each other and sometimes they argue. As you learn about one another, you may come across things that you do not agree on, or things that frustrate you about the other person. How you handle conflict in your relationship is what’s important in determining whether the issue is something that you can resolve, or if it’s ongoing and causes problems in your relationship.

Some of the warning signs

1.

Checks up on you all the time

2.

Gets jealous easily and tries to control what you do

3.

Doesn’t like you seeing your family and friends

4.

Blames you when things go wrong, puts you down or calls you names

5.

Harms you physically or emotionally

6.

Says things like ‘if you loved me, you would …’ to guilt you into doing things you don’t want to do

7.

Makes you feel that you should avoid doing things that would make them angry

Unhealthy behaviour

Many people assume that unhealthy behaviour in a relationship would be obvious to the people in the relationship and those around them, as it’s often thought to only be physical violence. However unhealthy behaviour can be present in a number of ways, and can have harmful effects on your health and wellbeing.

Examples of unhealthy behaviour in relationships

Emotional:
1. Constant teasing, bullying, insulting, humiliating
2. Threats, intimidation, put downs, lying, manipulating
3. Obsessive jealousy
4. Isolating you from friends/ family
5. Making you feel responsible for their anger
Social:
1. Checking up on you constantly to know where you are
2. Controlling who you see, where you go and what you do
3. Preventing you from seeing friends or family
4. Stalking

Examples of unhealthy behaviour in relationships

Physical:
1. Physically harming you
2. Injuring you or threatening to injure you with objects
3. Throwing objects or punching the wall
4. Reckless driving
5. Denying you access to medical care, including contraception
Sexual
1. Any forced sexual behaviour
2. Pressuring you to send images of yourself
3. Sharing any images of you to others
4. Forcing you to watch pornography
5. Pressuring or lying about contraception use

Examples of unhealthy behaviour in relationships

Verbal
1. Name calling
2. Harassing phone calls
3. Shouting, swearing
Financial
1. Taking your money or always asking for money
2. Forcing you to buy them things
3. Pressuring or forcing you to work or not to work

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