It’s exciting to be in a healthy relationship, and have someone to experience new feelings and go on new adventures with. But are those feelings mostly happy? Are your activities safe and fun? Is your relationship a healthy one?
The importance of a healthy relationship
Healthy relationships are necessary for keeping yourself happy and, well, healthy. Having a strong and healthy support system is necessary in life. Healthy relationships don’t even have to be intimate relationships–they can be healthy friendships. A strong, healthy support system can support you in hard times or push you to be a better you (studying, exercising, talking things out, etc.).
Signs of a healthy relationship
Signs of an unhealthy relationship
- Physical abuse
- Sexual abuse
- Minimization & blame
- Financial control
If you or someone you know is in an unhealthy relationship, you can contact the Georgia Crisis & Access Line 1-800-715-4255 or visit MyGCAL.com.
Want to know more relationships or get help?
Sexting is when you send or receive a text that contains sexually explicit material. Sexually explicit material can include nude photos, videos or explicit language. Anyone under the age of 18 is considered to be a minor (child) and can get in trouble with the law when they sext.
How illegal is sexting?
Sexting is illegal when it is done with anyone under the age of 18. Sexting can have serious consequences such as paying a large fine, going to jail and being labeled as a sex offender. In Georgia, a person can pay as much as $100,000 for being caught sexting. A person can go to jail for 5-20 years! A sex offender is a person who has done sexual things with a child. A common myth is that you can’t get in trouble for sharing your own pictures or videos. But that’s not true! Even if you share your own photos or videos, you can still face all the same punishments since you are a child.
Sexting can lead to unplanned consequences. An illegal outcome is revenge porn. Revenge porn is when someone shares your nude pictures or videos without consent. This is against the law, especially when they are of a child. That person can go to jail for sharing that media. Revenge porn also can create health and relationship problems for the person whose materials were shared.
How to say no to sexting
Just because a person wants to sext does not mean they really like you. Say no to anything illegal or uncomfortable. Communicate to your partner that you do not want to break the law. After saying no, change the subject to something you like. It is important to know that you can show other ways of liking a person instead of only through sexting. Fun ways of showing affection could be giving cards, listening to music together, trying new foods and so much more!
Read more about consequences of teen sexting:
Does your boyfriend or girlfriend get really mad sometimes, or jealous, or possessive? Does he or she keep you away from your friends or family, or make you do things you don’t want to?
If your answer is yes, then you might be in an abusive relationship. Maybe you’re telling yourself that it’s normal, or you did something to provoke him or her … but actually, if your boyfriend or girlfriend makes you uncomfortable or scared, then the answer is clear. You’re not in a healthy relationship.
How do I Know?
Abusive behaviors can happen in any relationship, and you don’t have to be sexually active in order to be abused. There are four types of unhealthy behaviors: physical violence, sexual violence, stalking and psychological aggression … and each one is equally as bad as the others. Warning signs for these behaviors include:
- Checking your phone without permission
- Constantly putting you down
- Extreme jealousy or insecurity
- Explosive temper
- Isolating you from family or friends
- Physically hurting you in anyway
- Telling you what to do
- Forcing you to have sex
Don’t tell yourself, “It’s no big deal,” because it is. If your boyfriend or girlfriend treats you badly then you need to safely get out of that relationship
You’re Not Alone
Nearly 1.5 million high school students find themselves in an abusive relationship each year. And once you’re in that relationship, sometimes you can feel stuck, or like you won’t find anyone better. It’s not true! No matter what your boyfriend or girlfriend tells you, you do not deserve to be treated badly. You’re going to do awesome things in the future, but you can’t do it with him or her by your side.
You can get out of your abusive relationship. There are plenty of people who can help you. If you or a loved one is in an abusive relationship, get help! Call 1-866-331-9474 or text “loveis” to 22522.
If you’d rather speak to someone in person, visit us at the Teen Health Center and we’ll help you.
Read more about dating violence: