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You deserve a loving, healthy relationship. Full stop.

February is Teen Dating Violence Awareness Month. Teen dating violence is, unfortunately, more prevalent than you may think, with 1 in 10 high school students experiencing physical abuse in a relationship.

To end dating violence in our community, it is important for all of us to know what a healthy relationship looks like, as well as signs of abuse. At the core of every healthy relationship is communication, boundaries, mutual respect, and support for one another.

Remember, you deserve a safe, healthy, and loving relationship. If you are in an abusive relationship, please reach out. Our Hotline Advocates are here 24/7 to offer compassionate and empathetic listening, safety planning, and resource referral. 24-HR Hotline: (913) 262-2868

There are four types of relationships: family relationships, friendships, acquaintanceships, and romantic relationships. All four types of relationships can fall under the categories of healthy or unhealthy.

10 Signs of an Unhealthy Relationship

1. Intensity – When one person in a relationship shows over-the-top and overwhelming behaviors. (Showing up unannounced at work to bring you flowers after a fight.)

2. Possessiveness – Someone is so jealous to the point where they control where you go, what you do, and who you spend time with. (You’re so gorgeous. I just don’t want other guys looking at you that way. Could you change?)

3. Manipulation – When someone controls the other person’s decisions and emotions. (Because I love you, I want to make sure all of your social media friends are appropriate. What are your passwords again?)

4. Isolation – One person keeps the other person away from their friends and family (They already don’t like me because they feel threatened by our relationship. They’re a bad influence on you. Let’s just go without them.)

5. Sabotage – When one person ruins the other person’s reputation or brings down their success. (Outing you to your friends and family without your permission or consent.)

6. Belittling – When one person in a relationship says things to make the other person feel bad about themselves. (You only got that promotion because your boss wants to sleep with you.)

7. Guilting – When someone makes their partner feel that it is their responsibility to keep them happy. (You’re my partner. If I can’t have sex with you, then maybe I should start looking elsewhere.)

8. Volatility – One person in the relationship makes the other feel scared or intimidated by unpredictable actions. (Swerving the car and driving recklessly until you agree to their demands.)

9. Deflecting Responsibility – Someone who makes up excuses for their wrong/poor behavior. (I had a really shitty day at work. My boss is a moron. Can’t you just be supportive and let last night go?)

10. Betrayal – When someone is disloyal (cheating, lie to you, purposefully leave you out.)


10 Signs of a Healthy Relationship

1. Comfortable Pace – Moves at a speed that is good for both people

2. Trust – Knowing your partner will not hurt you

3. Honesty – You can be truthful and yourself without fear of the other person’s response

4. Independence – You are able to be yourself outside of your relationship

5. Respect – You love each other for who you are and value the other one’s views and beliefs

6. Equality- Both people put in the same amount of effort into making the relationship run smoothly

7. Kindness – You are a lifeline for the other person with comfort and support

8. Taking Responsibility – Each person owns up to their words and actions

9. Healthy Conflict – You are able to talk about issues and disagreements without fighting and without being judgmental

10. Fun – You enjoy spending time with your partner and you bring out the best in each other