Healthy relationships are characterized by respect, sharing and trust. They are based on the belief that both partners are equal and that the power and control in the relationship are equally shared. Some of the characteristics of a healthy relationship are:
Respect – Listening to one another, valuing each other’s opinions, and listening in a non-judgmental manner. Respect also involves attempting to understand and affirm the other’s emotions.
Trust and support – Supporting each other’s goals in life, and respecting each other’s right to his/her own feelings, opinions, friends, activities and interest. It is valuing one’s partner as an individual.
Honesty and accountability – Communicating openly and truthfully, admitting mistakes or being wrong, acknowledging past use of violence, and accepting responsibility for one’s self.
Shared responsibility – Making family/relationship decisions together, mutually agreeing on a distribution of work which is fair to both partners. If parents, the couple shares parental responsibilities and acts as positive, non-violent role models for the children.
Economic partnership – In marriage or cohabitation, making financial decisions together, and making sure both partners benefit from financial arrangements.
Negotiation and fairness – both people are willing to compromise, accepting change, and seeking mutually satisfying solutions to conflict.
Non-threatening behavior – Talking and acting in a way that promotes both partners’ feelings of safety in the relationship. Both should feel comfortable and safe in expressing him/herself and in engaging in activities.
From the website of the University of Northern Colorado http://www.unco.edu
Questions About Batterers Treatment?
BATTERERS TREATMENT VS. ANGER MANAGEMENT
There is a very good reason why Batterers Treatment is far more valuable and effective in changing behavior than anger management groups. There are no guarantees when someone attends batterer treatment, but if someone really wants to change, this will give them the opportunity and tools to do so. Below is the difference between Batterers Treatment and Anger Management, and you can see for yourself why there is a difference.
How do you know if he or she is really changing?
Positive signs include:
- They has stopped being violent or threatening to you or others
- They acknowledge that the abusive behavior is wrong
- They understand that they does not have the right to control and dominate you
- You don’t feel afraid when you are with them
- They do not coerce or force you to have sex
- You can express anger toward them without feeling intimidated
- They do not make you feel responsible for their anger or frustration
- They respect your opinion even if they do not agree with it
- They respect your right to say “no.”
Signs that your abuser is NOT changing:
- They minimizes the abuse or denies how serious it really was
- They continue to blame others for bad behavior
- They claim that you’re the one who is abusive
- They pressure you to go to couple’s counseling
- They tell you that you owe them another chance
- You have to push them to stay in treatment
- They say that they can’t change unless you stay with them and support them
- They try to get sympathy from you, your children, your family and friends.
- They expect something from you in exchange for getting help
- They pressure you to make decisions about the relationship
Six Big Lies
If you hear your partner making these statements while they are in a treatment program for abusers, you should understand that they are lying to themself, and to you.
- “I’m not the only one who needs counseling.”
- “I’m not as bad as a lot of other people in here “
- “As soon as I’m done with this program, I’ll be cured.”
- “We need to stay together to work this out.”
- “If I weren’t under so much stress, I wouldn’t have such a short fuse.”
- “Now that I’m in this program, you have to be more understanding”
Adapted from Alabama Coalition Against Domestic Violence
Internet Safety Alert
Your abuser can monitor the use of your computer and the Internet. Learn how to protect yourself.