Healthy Relationships

Relationships are important in our everyday lives. They contribute to the health we have or can contribute to our unhealthy habits as well. Signs of an unhealthy relationship can be being controlled by your significant other, fear or not wanting to be around your significant other, controlling of resources most commonly money, where one partner is only in control of the money, poor communication and also not being allowed to do other activities that you used to enjoy doing such as seeing friends or family members that you otherwise would normally enjoy doing. Abuse in relationships can look like anything. We are most commonly used to looking for physical abuse which can show up as bruises and threats to being hurt by your significant other. Or it can be sexual abuse where you're forced to have intercourse against your will. But more commonly, the subtle ones are emotional and verbal abuse and those are not as easily seen they can be control of resources such as money, not being allowed to leave the house, bring restricted from participating in certain things with friends or family members, and also just being called names as well.

Emotional abuse and verbal abuse can present as increased stress to your body in the form of migraines, abdominal pain, lack of sleep, or anxiety. Other mental health disorders can also become more apparent when we are under significant emotional or verbal abuse. Professional help can be sought for abuse or unhealthy relationships. Anytime you feel uncomfortable or if you know that your relationship is going in the wrong direction with bad communication, sometimes it's better to get ahead of it by seeking counseling and turning that relationship around to become a healthy relationship. If you are in an abuse situation, you should get professional help sooner than later, especially if you feel like your safety is at risk or if there are children involved and their safety is at risk.

If you have a friend that's being abused, we recommend being there to help them by being a listening ear, helping with transportation, or watching their children if they're getting help. Things that you can watch for would be activity or behavior changes in them. The other important thing is if you are close with them, you can be their safety person and create a word or a phrase or a safe time to talk with them privately about their relationship.

If you are a victim of domestic abuse, there are multiple ways to get help. At Grand Itasca, we have nurses and doctors who are very well trained in helping manage your situation, so I would encourage contacting us phone or by sending a MyChart message to your doctor. Any school counselor is also able help you as a participation of the entire family unit. There is also a national hotline 1-800-799-SAFE