Get the Facts...

What's a Healthy Relationship?

Any relationship that you have in your teens will affect your relationships later in life. The lessons you learn about respect, healthy versus unhealthy relationships, and what's right or wrong will carry over into future relationships. So it's important to recognize what a healthy relationship is.

Is your relationship healthy? Check to see whether the following 12 qualities exist in yours:

Mutual respect

Respect means that each person values who the other is and understands the other person's boundaries.

Trust

Without trust, there's no way to have a healthy relationship. Choose to trust in each other and give each other the benefit of the doubt.

Honesty

If you have ever caught your friend or dating partner in a huge lie, you know that it takes time to rebuild your trust in him or her. Always be honest. It builds trust and strengthens the relationship.

Compromise

You won't always get your way. Acknowledge different points of view and be willing to give and take. It's a bad sign when the relationship becomes a power struggle.

Individuality

You shouldn't compromise who you are, and your identity should not be based on your boyfriend or girlfriend. Continue seeing your friends or doing the things that you love. Be supportive if your boyfriend or girlfriend wants to pursue new hobbies or make new friends.

Good communication

Speak honestly and openly to avoid miscommunication. If you need to sort out your feelings first, your boyfriend or girlfriend should respect your wishes and wait until you're ready to talk.

Anger control

We all get angry, but how we express it can affect our relationships with others. Anger can be handled in healthy ways such as taking a deep breath, counting to 10, or talking it out.

Problem solving

You can learn to solve problems and identify new solutions by breaking a problem into small parts or by talking through the situation.

Fighting fair

Everyone will argue at some point, but those who are fair, stick to the subject, and avoid insults are more likely to come up with a possible solution. Take a short break if the discussion gets too heated.

Understanding

Take a minute to understand what others might be feeling-put yourself in their shoes. It can improve your communication skills, too.

Self-confidence

Having confidence in yourself can help your relationships with others. It shows that you are calm and comfortable enough to allow others to express their opinions without forcing your opinions on others to win an argument.

Being a role model

By modeling what respect means, you will inspire your boyfriend or girlfriend, your friends, and your family to model respect, too. Take every opportunity to give respect.