Curious to see how your relationship may compare to an abusive one? Take the Abuse Quiz and see.
There are three elements needed to create a HEALTHY relationship:
Element #1: Respect Element #2: Trust & Honesty Element #3: Emotional and Physical Safety
For most couples, respect seems to be the hardest to define, and the trickiest to keep in the relationship. There is a subtle difference between showing respect to someone, and having respect for someone. Displaying good manners, or "being polite to elders or people in authority", are examples of showing respect. But in order to truly have respect for someone, you also need to affirm them and how they live their life.
Trust and Honesty
There must be MUTUAL TRUST in a healthy partnership. Both partners can be counted on to be honest and reliable. It is far wiser to choose a partner who is trustworthy in the first place, than to find someone dishonest, and hope they will change. Each of you can have outside friends and interests, without constant accusations of cheating, etc. Trust is earned over time. You do not have to automatically trust just anyone. You can pick and choose whom you believe seems trustworthy, and then allow them to gradually earn your trust, based on their actions.
Honesty and trust go hand-in-hand. If you catch your partner lying to you, it will become harder and harder to believe what they say to you. This breaks down the level of trust in the relationship.
In domestic violence situations, many batterers are extremely jealous, suspicious, or controlling. It is not unusual for a person to be emotionally abused or physically injured for things like talking to a member of the opposite sex because their partner imagines they are flirting, or even cheating on them. In cases like this, a person finds themselves lying in order to avoid abuse.
THIS IS NOT THE SAME AS BEING A TRULY DISHONEST PERSON.
In domestic violence, lying sometimes becomes a survival skill.
Emotional and Physical Safety
In order to have a loving, nurturing, healthy relationship, there must also be safety. Obviously, if your partner has pushed, kicked, hit you, etc., there is not peaceful assurance that there is physical safety with this person. If your partner makes fun of you, humiliates you, laughs at you, deliberately discloses sensitivities to others, etc., then there is no emotional safety.
Take advantage of other resources we have compiled for you.
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