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Making Smart Choices in Relationships

Violent and Non Violent Relationships
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From a 2005 New York State Teen Dating Media Contest

WHAT TO AVOID!
 
Violent Relationships Based on Power and Control
 
  1. Using Threats and Coercion

Example:    Making and/or carrying out threats to do something to hurt your partner

 

  1. Using Intimidation

Example:    Making your partner afraid by using looks, actions or gestures

 

  1. Using Emotional Abuse

Example:    Putting your partner down verbally

 

  1. Using Isolation

Example:    Controlling what your partner does, who he/she talks to, what he/she reads, where he/she goes

 

  1. Minimizing, Denying and Blaming

Example:    Denying the abuse and not taking your partner’s concerns about is seriously

 

  1. Using Children

Example:    Making partner feel guilty about children

 

  1. Using Gender Privileges

Example:    Making all the big decisions – being the “master of the castle”

 

  1. Using Economic Abuse

Example:    Prevent partner from keeping/getting a job

WHAT TO STRIVE FOR!
 
An Equal Relationship

 

  1. Negotiation & Fairness

Example:  seek mutually satisfying resolutions to conflicts

 

  1. Respect

Example:  listening to partner non-judgementally

 

  1. Honesty & Accountability

Example:  accepting responsibility for self; admit being wrong

 

  1. Non-Threatening Behaviour

Example:  talking or acting so that your partner feels safe and comfortable expressing him or herself

 

  1. Trust & Support

Example:  support your partner’s goals in life; respect their rights to their own feelings, friends, activities, and opinions

 

  1. Responsible Parenting

Example:  share parental duties; be a positive role model for children

 

  1. Economic Partnership

Example:  make financial decisions together

 
 
 

GROUND RULES FOR HEALTHY NON-VIOLENT RELATIONSHIPS
  1. Avoid Physical Aggression - pushing, shoving, etc...
  2. Stay focused on the issue at hand and avoid bringing other issues that have accumulated into a disagreement
  3. Avoid name calling - only reduces focus and avoids the situation at hand
  4. Avoid putting the blame on the other person - Use "I" statements to express feelings to each other

 

Problems keeping a relationship?
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