We all deserve amazing love—from ourselves as well as others—where our voices, identities, and bodies are affirmed.
Here are some signs that can help us evaluate the health of our relationships—sexual and non-sexual relationships, and with ourselves and others.
Some signs of healthier relationships
- We feel good emotionally and physically, in the ways that are possible for us.
- We can safely raise concerns.
- We have full enthusiastic choice over the kind of intimacy and/or sex we might want (see Consent and Sex and “Safer Sex Strategies”).
- Our identities and bodies are validated and respected.
Some signs of unhealthy patterns in relationships
- Lack of respect for our identities or aspects of our identities.
- Belittling behavior; insults are excused as jokes.
- Feeling unsafe emotionally or physically.
- Volatile behavior and deflecting responsibility.
In reality, people are complex (regardless of our identities). Often, we fall anywhere on spectrums of healthy or unhealthy behaviours that may arise due to many factors—broader social factors, our personal histories, etc. We’re always in the process of healing.
However, in our relationships, if we frequently find ourselves in fear or in risk of emotional or physical danger, we should seek safety and support first. Check out the Resources page.