Relationships play a vital role in our lives. Whether it’s with our family, friends or romantic partner, relationships give us the support and connection we need to feel happy. They can also be a source of stress, so it’s important to make sure yours are healthy.
Generally, when people talk about being in a relationship, they mean that they are committed to each other and that there is some level of romantic or sexual exclusivity. This can be formalized through marriage, or it can be more casual and less permanent, such as cohabitation or ethical nonmonogamy. In either case, being in a relationship means that you have trust that your partner won’t cheat on you or leave you and is willing to communicate openly with you about feelings and concerns.
Ideally, there should be highs and lows in your relationship, and the ratio should be around 5 good moments for every 1 bad one. However, there are some situations where the imbalance is more extreme, and it can be difficult to know if your relationship is unhealthy or even toxic. In these cases, it may be helpful to seek advice from a counselor or other mental health professional.