Healthy Relationships


Relationships are living, dynamic aspects of our lives that require ongoing attention and care. They provide security and support, help us cope with stress and anxiety, and allow us to achieve our goals. The benefits of a positive relationship extend to both the individual and the community. A healthy relationship is marked by healthy communication, emotional intimacy, mutual understanding, deep love, and unflinching support.

When used to describe a romantic, familial or platonic bond, the term relationship can refer to any intimate connection between two or more people, irrespective of gender or sexual orientation. However, the word is more commonly applied to romantic relationships and those that culminate in a marriage or civil union. Those that do not involve commitment from either party are referred to as friendships or acquaintances. A person can also have a relationship with their body, which can be considered a physical embodiment of their spiritual self.

In addition to providing stability and security, the emotional attachment that is characteristic of a relationship has been shown to have a variety of positive health impacts. These include increased happiness, a sense of well-being, greater confidence and self-esteem, more restful sleep, better coping with stress, and improved mental health. The feeling of belonging that comes with being in a committed relationship can also help alleviate feelings of loneliness.

A healthy relationship can be characterized by mutuality, which means that each person gives and receives in equal measure. This can be measured by looking at how much love, affection, and energy is given and received in the relationship, as well as how each individual feels about their connection with the other.

For example, a healthy relationship may include open communication in which each person is willing to share their feelings and fears without fear of judgement or being criticized. A healthy relationship will also allow each person to be themselves, including their interests, hobbies and personal style. A healthy relationship will be flexible, with both individuals able to make changes when necessary. A healthy relationship will also be trustworthy, meaning that if a person makes a promise, they will follow through.

Lastly, a healthy relationship will be respectful and considerate, taking into account the other person’s feelings and preferences. Those who are in a healthy relationship often understand their partner’s nonverbal cues and respond to them accordingly.

For instance, a person in a healthy relationship will be able to tell when their partner is upset or anxious and will take steps to address these issues. They will also be able to distinguish between normal frustrations and serious concerns, and they will know when it is appropriate to seek professional help.