Healthy Relationships

February 14, 2022
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Because red flags are for Les Mis, not relationships.

Happy Valentine’s Day! Valentine’s day is a time to celebrate our healthy relationships. Here you’ll learn how to identify red flags and communicate openly. If you have a date for this wonderful day, or if you’re looking for one, let’s make sure it’s a healthy match!

What are red flags?

Let’s talk about red flags in a relationship. Red flags are signs of unhealthy behavioral patterns. For example; if a dating partner treated a waiter/waitress rudely, that’s a red flag. That same behavior may eventually show up with their partner. Some potential red flags to watch out for:

  • Uncontrolled anger
  • Control issues
  • Jealousy or mistrust
  • Possessiveness

Now obviously, we know these behaviors are problematic. So how do people end up in unhealthy relationships?

Is this love?

Sometimes these red flags can be disguised. Your partner might say, “I need to know who you are with, when you are with them, and where you will be at all times.” If a relationship is new you may think the attention is sweet or like that they are concerned about you. But if a partner feels like they constantly have to report their life to someone, that’s a red flag. An individual should be able to live their own life without having to ask their partner for permission. 

Another example of a sticky situation could be that your partner gets jealous when you spend time with friends or family. While time alone with your partner is important, it’s also unhealthy for complete isolation. An individual should be able to have time to see friends/family or enjoy hobbies. Time apart from a partner is healthy and is needed in a relationship. When isolation occurs, it can be more likely for abuse to develop in a relationship, and harder for victims to get help. 

Healthy Communication

If you notice a red flag in a relationship, that doesn’t mean it’s over! I, myself, have been the partner with a red flag. I was jealous when my partner would spend time with friends or family. It wasn’t until my partner and I had a conversation about this that I realized my behavior was not justified or healthy. I put in the work and fixed the issue. Healthy communication is SO important in having a healthy relationship. 

Healthy Relationships

Healthy is the keyword here. Yelling/screaming is not a healthy form of communication. On the other side of the spectrum, silence is also unhealthy. It’s not a clear answer that something is wrong. Reacting out of emotion right away is not always the correct answer either. The next time conflict comes up in your relationship, platonic or romantic, try these tips. Please remember that these steps are only for when conflict is minor, and aren’t abuse. 

  1. Talk directly to your partner
  2. Say only what is kind, true, & necessary 
  3. Take time to calm down
  4. Speak in a private non-isolated area
  5. Be willing to find a compromise
  6. When solved, move forward

To me, love is when I feel safe enough to be 100% myself. Healthy relationships are hard work and require effort on both sides. It’s important to look out for red flags in dating partners, but also in ourselves. When we find these red flags, we need to openly communicate, find a compromise, and move forward. If a red flag is brought to their attention, a good partner will take responsibility, apologize, and work to fix the issue with you. I hope these tips will help you in your relationships. Happy Valentine’s from us to you! 

To learn more about healthy relationships click here. Learn more about healthy platonic relationships here.