Is It Healthy?
Human beings are designed to be social creatures. From birth all the way to aging, we rely on others to help us. It’s no wonder that relationships are so important to us. Unfortunately, they’re not always easy.
Do you find yourself in a relationship – whether it be family, romantic, or friendship – that you care a lot about, but it just seems to be so heavy? We can become so accustomed to the relationships in our life that we don’t see the obvious unhealthy signs right in front of us.
Psychologists Gay and Kathleen Hendrick’s say that, “A co-dependent unhealthy relationship is fostered when two people agree to be partner’s in each other’s drama.”
There’s doesn’t really exist a “neutral” relationship. If you’re not building each other up, you’re weighing each other down. In any relationship, you should rely on one another for support while maintaining distinct, individual lives. An entangled relationship, also referred to as a co-dependent relationship, is a bond where you both feel comfortable, but there are repeated violations of respect, loyalty, love, safety, or kindness. Sometimes things seem GOOD, but you always ride the unstable wave between GOOD and BAD.
In a healthy relationship you meet all your Relationship Rights. What are Relationship Rights, you ask? They’re the rights that you should exercise in every relationship you have. Can you check off all of them?
- I have the right to be me, and to be good enough just as I am.
- I have the right to take care of myself first.
- I have the right to say no and do not have to explain myself.
- I have the right to feel safe.
- I have the right to love and be loved.
- I have the right to privacy and alone time.
- I have the right to grow and change.
- I have the right to trust my instincts.
- I have the right to choose a partner I can trust.
- I have the right to be treated with respect.
- I have the right to pursue my dreams.
- I have the right to ask questions.
- I have the right to form other healthy relationships.
- I have the right to express my opinion, even if someone doesn’t like it.
- I have the right to make mistakes.
- I have the right to not worry about what others think of me.
- I have the right to control my career and money.
- I have the right to control my own life and make my own decisions.
- I have the right to get angry and express my feelings.
- I have the right to not fix other adults’ problems.
- I have the right to ask for help.
Each and every one of these rights is important for having healthy, helpful, and fulfilling relationships. You have the right to choose relationships that help you grow, not bring you down!
I am a Licensed Clinical Social Worker, Adjunct Professor, and Certified Field Instructor committed to working with diverse groups of individuals, families, and communities.