It’s important to recognize that the concept of “dating” can vary greatly depending on who you are talking to, their age, life experience, culture, religion, and gender. But, regardless of these differences, healthy relationships – whether casual or well-established – have many elements in common: respect, communication and trust.
Everyone, regardless of who they are, has certain rights. When you become involved with someone else, you still have these rights. Being in a relationship doesn’t change what you can or can’t choose for yourself. And it doesn’t change what the people you’re dating can or can’t choose for themselves. Understanding these basic concepts is a great start to building a healthy and respectful relationship.
Within the relationship, does one person...
Jealousy and possessiveness can be early warning signs of violent or abusive behaviours. People often excuse the behaviour, thinking that it only happens because the person loves them so much. This type of behaviour is not about love. It’s about power and control.
It might seem flattering that someone wants to spend all their time with you and only you. But healthy relationships are about balance. Any attempts to isolate you from friends and family or other activities that are important to you is not a sign of love or affection. It is a sign of wanting power and control.
In a healthy relationship, people are free to make their own decisions. Dictating what type of clothes a person wears is a controlling behaviour that signifies treating the person more like a possession than a person.
The impact of put-down’s and name-calling is often underrated and may be justified as harmless joking around. But, the fact is that this behaviour is hurtful and damaging to a person’s self-image and confidence.
It is unreasonable, unfair and disrespectful to expect sex in return for anything. Sexual activity must be free and voluntary – and only when both people are ready.
Teenagers and relationships can make for some intense emotions. Sometimes this intensity is used to justify unacceptable or abusive behaviours. Abusive behaviour is not okay, even when emotions are intense. Behaviour like this is about power and control, not love and respect.