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Last night, I stumbled upon a question about differentiating between healthy and unhealthy relationships. As I read the answers given, one of them struck me as interesting. The answer basically said that in a healthy relationship, the couple are friends becoming better friends.  While I liked the answer, I was thinking of what I would have said if I was asked that question. After being married to my best friend for nearly fourteen years, I think I may have a good answer or three to give myself. So here they are:

#3. Healthy relationships involve trust. Unhealthy relationships demand proof.  Relationships take time to develop. In that development, learning one another is crucial because it is based on what we know and the consistency of it that allows for trust to blossom. Unhealthy relationships ignores what is known consistently. They will know their partner will go to bed at eleven p.m. every night but will stay up with them regardless of how they feel or their own personal needs of sleep simply because of their own inability to trust their partner is not doing something wrong.

#2. Healthy relationships encourages each person to grow individually. Unhealthy relationships breeds jealousy when growth occurs. Couples are to build each other up in their endeavors. Being strong individually makes for a strong couple. They realize that there is no need for jealousy because the end results will come back to the both of them. Instead of being jealous, they become the other’s biggest supporter and fan. Unhealthy relationships constantly vie against each other to be the number one spot in the relationship. They don’t realize that ebb and flow of success is natural in a relationship. It allows the other person to be the support of the person shining for once and if it doesn’t happen, jealousy and anger breeds discontentment which, in turn, breeds distrust and ultimately hatred.

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#1. Healthy relationships understands there is a season for everything. Unhealthy relationships will try to include everything in a season. What is meant by this is that healthy relationships understand there is a time for silence, a time for being alone, a time for togetherness, a time to talk, a time to laugh, a time to argue, a time to agree – there is a time for everything. They also understand that when that time is up, they will still stand. They know that whatever season it is for them is just a season and their relationship can withstand anything because at the core, they trust that they have each other.

Unhealthy relationships try to pack everything in that season. One person is silent so the other person begins to get suspicious. This often times lead to an argument and a feeling that a trust of some sort was broken. This leads to the revelation of thoughts that were already in the mind. When that happens, the feeling of separation and thoughts of the dissolution of a relationship becomes more of a reality. Sometimes, others have to step in and ask the couple to work it out because they are seriously fighting over something petty.

Frankly put, to live in this world, the opposite sex will talk to your mate. Get over it. Flirting can happen naturally simply because it is based on the recipient’s perception, not the speaker’s delivery. Get over it. If your partner is willing to do things that will leave you suspicious of their behavior and refuses to calm your thoughts on the subject, it’s not a healthy relationship. So do what you can to get over it.  Misunderstanding these things or being in a relationship with someone who doesn’t understand it at all is a sign of an unhealthy relationship as well.

Until next time:

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