The Healthy High School Relationship
It is a common concern among high schoolers in relationships; What will happen to me and my boyfriend/girlfriend after graduation. There is some strong evidence that points to the fact that married people who grew up together have a stronger bond, and that makes sense. Think about it, those two probably came from similar backgrounds, shared similar experiences, and are molded by the same values that community has. This, of course, isn’t always the case. Relationships can break up after high school because of distance, infidelity, meeting new people, and many other situation-specific scenarios. What I have found through my research is that you shouldn’t bank on your high school relationship to last forever. Many people make the mistake of marrying their significant other in high school. These people have a 46% rate of divorced. A smarter route to go would be to focus on learning how to have a healthy relationship when you are in high school, and wait to get married. According to the same study as listed before, couples that began their relationships in high school that wed when they were 25 had only a 22% rate of divorce. If you want my opinion, I’ve always said that there is no rush when it comes to relationships. This goes double for high schoolers. I have never understood the rush that people have felt to get married and have kids. In high school, you need to learn what makes a good relationship, and just experience a lot. It all comes down to having differing experiences, and finding yourself. That is what adolescence is about.
Q and A with School Psychologist
1. What does a healthy high school relationship entail?
A healthy relationship should include reciprocal trust, respect and positive communication; where you both can be honest with each other and listen to one another. Couples may not always agree, but you should be able to talk about how you feel and care enough about the other person to try to understand their point of view. The healthy relationship also has a give and take, where both individuals can share thoughts and ideas.
2. What are some characteristics of unhealthy relationships?
There are many signs of an unhealthy relationship. It may have just one or two symptoms or many. In unhealthy relationships one partner may pressure the other to do things they are not comfortable with. Trust can also be an issue, and one person may get angry or upset when you hang out with friends or family. Lack of respect can also be a characteristic of an unhealthy relationship, where one may make fun of, swear and yell at, boss around, try to embarrass the other or harm them physically or emotionally. Communication can often be poor in these relationships, where you may not feel comfortable sharing how you feel or you are scared of the other person’s reaction.
If you think you may be in an unhealthy relationship, you should speak to a trusted adult, such as a parent, guidance counselor, school psychologist or medical provider.
3. What is something you can do to lead a healthy relationship?
The first step towards building healthy relationships is to feel good about yourself; to know what you want and what makes you happy. You should have value in yourself, thoughts and ideas and know that you deserve to be treated well. Taking time to build your self-esteem and get to know yourself is an important step toward being able to have a relationship in a healthy way.
For more info: https://www.hhs.gov/ash/oah
"Well my music was different in high school; I was singing about love—you know, things I don't care about anymore." -Lady Gaga
"There is only one happiness in this life, to love and be loved." -George Sand
"If I know what love is, it is because of you." -Hermann Hesse
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