Healthy relationships are built on a foundation of communication and trust. Frequent communication with your partner will keep the relationship positive for both participants. Following the five guidelines below will help you keep your relationship healthy:

  • Speak your mind – If something is bothering you, it’s much better to talk about it instead of keeping it to yourself.
  • Respect each other – Your partner’s ideas and desires are just as important as yours. Try to always make a healthy effort to keep both your ideas and your partner’s ideas in mind.
  • Compromise – Disagreements are a natural part of most relationship, but it’s best to find ways to compromise. Try to solve conflicts in a fair and rational way.
  • Be supportive – Offer reassurance and encouragement to your partner. Also, let your partner know when you need their support. Healthy relationships are about building each other up, not putting each other down.
  • Give each other space – While it’s common to want to spend all of your time together, it’s important to also give each other space.

Healthy Boundaries 

Setting boundaries can help you and your partner get what you want out of your relationship. Boundaries are a tool to help you clearly communicate what helps you feel comfortable and respected when you’re with your partner. Setting boundaries doesn’t mean you don’t trust or love your partner, or that you’re hiding anything. In an intimate sexual relationship, a good place to start could be discussing what you are and are not comfortable with sexually. It can often be easier to talk about your boundaries before things get physical.

Remember, healthy boundaries should mean you can:

  • Go out with your friends without your partner.
  • Participate in activities and hobbies you like.
  • Keep passwords to your email, social media accounts or phone private.
  • Respect each others’ likes and needs.

Navigating Disagreements

It’s normal to have arguments with your partner, but it’s critical to handle them maturely and healthily. Here are some steps you can take to navigate these disagreements respectfully:

  • Choose the right time – Try not to start an important conversation if you both don’t have enough time to finish the conversation fully. Leaving things unresolved can make the situation feel worse.
  • Try to use “I” and “we” statements instead of “you” statements – Phrasing your feelings this way helps keep what your saying from feeling like an attack or an assumption.
  • Take a break if you get angry – It’s okay to feel angry sometimes, but it’s never okay to take out your anger on your partner no matter how frustrated you get. If you feel yourself getting angry, try taking a short break and returning to the conversation when you feel more calm.
  • Stay focused – Try not to let the argument drift into other arguments that aren’t related to the first conversation.
  • Assume best intentions – In a healthy relationship, neither your nor your partner want to hurt each other. While you might be having an argument, remember you’re on the same side.

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