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How Healthy Is Your Relationship? - Relationship MOT

Very few of us take the time to analyze the health of our relationship.  We adapt to the pain and sadness by avoiding each other in busyness.  You cannot fix what you don't acknowledge!  Take this test now to make a diagnosis and determine the way forward.

All relationships have their ups and downs.  Life experiences, emotions and the stresses and strains of life affect your relationship.

Sometimes we are so busy getting on with coping from day to day that we don’t question the health of our relationship. Answering the following questions may help you to see things as they are:-

  1. Do you constantly bicker?  Arguments are healthy and normal.  It shows that you are both emotionally invested in your relationship.  Continuous bickering and one-upmanship is disrespectful and shows a lack of care for one another. 
  2. Never argue? When a couple don’t have any disagreements at all, that’s a sign that both members of the couple have given up and are feeling hopeless about the impact they can have on each other and about the chances of the relationship changing
  3. Do you prioritize friends and family over your partner?  While it’s important to make time for people outside your relationship, it becomes an issue if you’d always rather see them than your partner.

    Another indicator that you have lost connection with your partner is if you find yourself over-relying on friends or family for emotional safety and support. That’s a sign that you have lost not only the desire to share your deeper emotions with your partner, but that you may no longer feel safe being vulnerable with them
  4. Have you stopped prioritizing quality time together? it’s a sign of disconnect.
    Relationships take work, and when something is important to us, we make an effort to take care of it. When that effort stops, it's a sign that your relationship is losing importance and value.
  5. Are you over-busy?  Make excuses for not coming home?  Are you running away from problems?  Or avoiding being intimate and close.
  6. Are you or your partner critical and judgmental of each other? When critical commentary or judgment outweighs intimacy, it's hard for a relationship to recover. You cannot experience joy when you feel like you’re constantly failing.
  7. How much gratitude do you show each other.  We all want to know that we are appreciated and are seen and heard.  When there is no gratitude we stop feeling motivated to be close and intimate with our partner.
  8. Have you stopped having sex?  Intimacy isn’t just about sex – it’s about showing affection and being vulnerable with each other.  When there is no sex (in the absence of a medical condition or depression) it can mean that you don’t feel safe being emotionally close with your partner.
  9. Are you feeling alone?  Feeling alone can mean you’re not receiving what you need from your partner—that they’re not supportive or emotionally available to you.
  10. Do you show contempt for one another? We often save our worst, in terms of anger, for our significant others. Treating your partner as inferior is a recipe for discontent. In fact, contempt is the single greatest predictor of divorce
  11. Holding a grudge?  It takes far more energy to stay angry and hold a grudge than it does to let it go. Not only is it an agonizing position to put your partner in, but a grudge is a destructive form of self-sabotage because the purpose is to keep people at a distance. And if someone’s wallowing in anger, who would want to be with them? Staying stuck in the past because your partner did something to hurt you, and you will not forgive them, continuously sabotages you in the now.
  12. Are you jealous of your single friends?/Day dreaming of a single life?

Your Prescription

If you realize that you are unhappy in your relationship in some cases it is possible to fix it. But it's going to require work. Take some time to think about why your relationship has changed, what might help solve your problems, and, most importantly, what's best for you. If you do feel it's worth working through your issues, start by having an open and honest conversation with your partner, then decide together what the next steps should be.  You may find it difficult to talk about your feelings or are not sure where to start building connnection.  The structure of Imago Relationship Counselling will help you to change the way you communicate so that even if you have frustrations you can stay connected.

Answering yes to the following questions is an indication that your relationship may be abusive:-
- Does your partner make all the decisions?
- Is your partner always right?
- Does your partner control everything?
- Are you scared of upsetting your partner?
- Have you ever felt suffocated in your relationship?
- Are you always concerned about your partner’s reactions to things?

The signs of being in an abusive relationship can vary based upon whether your partner is physically or emotionally abusive, or a combination of these.
Here are some signs:-

  •   Your partner physically strikes you, or engages in other physically abusive behaviors, such as hitting, kicking, punching, or     slapping or throwing things at you.
  •   Your partner prevents you from leaving the house or forces you to go certain places against your will.
  •   Your partner forces you to have sex. 
  •   Your partner threatens you with a gun or other weapon.
  •   Your partner blames you for their own abusive behaviour.
  •   Your partner accuses you of cheating, tells you how to dress, and limits your contact with friends or family.
  •   Your partner damages your property or threatens to harm you.
  •   Your partner will not allow you to have a job, stops you from going to work, or causes you to lose your job.
  •   Your partner does not allow you to access the family bank account, deposits your paychecks into an account you cannot access,
      or does not allow you to spend money.
  •   Your partner checks your 'phone and social media accounts.

Aside from these more specific signs, in general, abuse in a relationship can involve your partner making you feel bad about yourself, eroding your self-esteem, and placing you in a situation where you are dependent upon your partner financially, so it is difficult to escape the relationship.

A controlling relationship is one where you let your significant other tell you what to do. This person might control you in a passive way or in a very direct and rigorous way. You might let yourself get controlled by someone else when you lack self-confidence or when you are too much in love to truly see what is going on.

Because you love your partner you want to fix the relationship.  You believe that over time if you do everything that your partner demands then they will feel secure in your love.  THIS NEVER WORKS!  Unfortunately, an abusive partner can lead the victim to believe the abuse is the victim’s fault, but this is never the case. Regardless of what the abuser says, abuse is always the fault of the abuser.

Are abusive partners capable of real change?

Changing abusive behaviours can be difficult. An abuser may deny that there is a problem, or they may be ashamed to seek help. If you’re wondering can abusers change, the answer is that it is possible, but it is not an easy process.

For change to occur, the perpetrator of the abuse must be willing to make changes. This can be a lengthy, challenging, and emotionally taxing process.  It would require the services of a Relationship Counsellor.

Abusive behavior is linked to mental health and drug problems, as well as issues stemming from childhood. This means that the abusive partner must overcome deep-seeded behaviours in order to demonstrate real change.

The perpetrator of the abuse must also take the responsibility to put an end to abusive and violent behaviour. In the meantime, the victim in the relationship must be prepared to stop accepting abusive behaviour.

 

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