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Thursday, 25 February 2021

Prioritising healthy relationships

SOCIAL RELATIONS: The Student Counselling Unit is encouraging members of the CPUT community to let 2021 be the year that they prioritise healthy relationships with their partners, friends and family members. SOCIAL RELATIONS: The Student Counselling Unit is encouraging members of the CPUT community to let 2021 be the year that they prioritise healthy relationships with their partners, friends and family members.

The Student Counselling Unit is encouraging members of the CPUT to let 2021 be the year that they prioritise healthy relationships.

“There is no such thing as a perfect relationship,” says Counselling Psychologist, Lynn Fick. “Just as you need to water a plant to help it blossom to its full potential- so you will need to engage in certain actions to create and maintain a healthy relationship.”

There are many characteristics that can describe a healthy relationship, but Fick  outlines the following few key characteristics that stand out:

Communication - Being able to communicate your feelings and thoughts in a constructive, honest, and open way is important for a healthy relationship. Actively listening and being listened to are good ways to show one’s partner that one cares about what they have to say.

Trust - Knowing that you can rely on one another is essential in creating a feeling of safety and security within the relationship. Honest communication can help to establish this trust.

Respect - Respect for oneself, one’s partner and the relationship are essential. This demonstrates that one feels valued and that one values one’s partner and the relationship that one has.

Support - Feeling supported and supporting one’s partner is important in creating an atmosphere of encouragement and unity. A healthy relationship is one in which one knows one can go to one’s partner when one needs assistance or guidance.

Boundaries - It is important to communicate one’s boundaries to one’s partner. Explaining what one likes and dislikes helps one’s partner to understand what one is okay with, and when they overstep one’s boundaries. This includes one’s sexual, physical and emotional boundaries.

Independence - As much as one might enjoy time with one’s partner, it is equally important to make time for one’s own friends, hobbies and interests. It is equally important to have one’s partner to respect one’s independence.

Having a good time - It is important to have fun in a relationship. To laugh, explore and make new memories can help bring partners closer together. Life can become very serious, so a moment to break away from that and enjoy yourself is important.

Fick adds that a healthy relationship requires time, effort and a willingness by both partners to make it work. “It is not easy, and you might need to try and try again until you eventually succeed.”

She argues that the above healthy relationship characteristics should not only define one’s relationship with one’s partner, but with one’s family and friends too. “You deserve to have more than one healthy relationship. You deserved to be loved, respected and supported.”

Written by CPUT News

Email: news@cput.ac.za