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Relationship Spectrum

Healthy Relationship Spectrum




  • Communicating: You talk openly about problems and listen to one another. You respect each other’s opinions.

  • Respectful: You value each other as you are.

  • Trusting: You believe what your partner has to say.  You do not feel the need to “prove” each other’s trustworthiness.

  • Honest: You are honest with each other, but can still keep some things private.

  • Equal: You make decisions together and hold each other to the same standard.

  • Enjoying personal time: You enjoy spending time apart, alone or with others. You respect each other’s need for time apart.

  • Making mutual sexual choices: You talk openly about sexual and reproductive choices together. All partners willingly consent to sexual activity and can safely discuss what you are and are not comfortable with.

  • Economic/financial partners: You and your partner have equal say with regard to finances. All partners have access to the resources they need.

  • Engaging in supportive parenting: All partners are able to parent in a way they feel comfortable with. You communicate together about the needs of the child(ren), as well as the needs of the parents.

  • Not communicating: When problems arise, you fight or you don’t discuss them at all.

  • Disrespectful: One or more partners is not considerate of the other(s).

  • Not trusting: One partner doesn’t believe what the other says, or feels entitled to invade their privacy.

  • Dishonest: One or more partners tell lies.

  • Trying to take control: One partner feels their desires and choices are more important.

  • Only spending time with your partner: Your partner’s community is the only one you socialize in.

  • Pressured by the other into sexual activity: One partner uses pressure or guilt on the other to have sex or do anything sexual at any point.

  • Ignoring a partner’s boundaries: It is assumed only one partner is responsible for making informed decisions.

  • Unequal economically: Finances are not discussed, and/or it is assumed only one partner is in charge of finances.

  • Communicates in a way that is hurtful, threatening, insulting or demeaning.

  • Mistreats the other: One partner does not respect the feelings, thoughts, decisions, opinions or physical safety of the other.

  • Accuses the other of cheating or having an affair when it’s not true: The partner who accuses may hurt the other in a physical or verbal way as a result.

  • Denies that the abusive actions are abuse: An abusive partner may try to blame the other for the harm they’re doing, or makes excuses for abusive actions or minimizes the abusive behavior.

  • Controls the other: There is no equality in the relationship. One partner makes all decisions for the couple without the other’s input.

  • Isolates the other partner: One partner controls where the other one goes and whom they talk to. They may isolate their partner from family and friends.

  • Forces sexual activity or pregnancy: One partner forces the other to have sex, or do anything they don’t want to do sexually at any point. In relationships where pregnancy is a physical possibility, one partner may force the other to become pregnant.

  • Exerts economic control: One partner controls the money and access to resources. Having an open dialogue about finances is not an option. This may include preventing a partner from earning an income or not allowing a partner access to their own income.

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If your relationship falls within the unhealthy or abusive spectrum, call our hotline at (800) 688-6157. Our advocates are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Your call is confidential. 
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