All relationships are different, and it’s important to listen to your intuition when thinking about whether you are in a healthy or unhealthy relationship. Take a look at some of the checklists below and see if your relationship seems to have more characteristics of one section rather than the other.

Healthy relationships have trust. Does your partner…

  • Make decisions together with you
  • Support your individuality and independence
  • Give you the freedom to work or take care of finances on your own

Or does your partner…

  • Demonstrate possessiveness
  • Insist on knowing where you are and who you’re with at all times
  • Isolate you, surveil you, or attempt to control/restrict your movement

Healthy relationships have respect. Does your partner…

  • Respect your boundaries and requests
  • Consider you an equal partner, especially when making decisions
  • Value your thoughts and your feelings

Or does your partner…

  • Rush you into the relationship
  • Belittle or minimize you, your beliefs, your background, or your remarks
  • Make you feel bad about yourself

Healthy relationships have open lines of healthy communication. Does your partner…

  • Create a safe environment where you can communicate without threat or consequence
  • Demonstrate a willingness to discuss difficult issues
  • Have the willingness to compromise

Or does your partner…

  • Refuse to take responsibility for their actions, often redirecting the blame to you or others
  • Make you think you are crazy
  • Deny your concerns or refuse to take them seriously

Healthy relationships support both partners. Does your partner…

  • Support your goals in life
  • Encourage your own feelings, friends, activities, and opinions
  • Listen to you non-judgmentally, emotionally affirming and understanding you

Or does your partner…

  • Intimidate you and threaten to hurt you or someone you love
  • Make you feel worthless
  • Pressure you or force you into unwanted activities, including sex

In addition, if you are a member of the differently-abled community and are in an unhealthy relationship, you may be experiencing any or all of the following:

  • Stealing or withholding your Social Security Disability check
  • Using your disability to shame or humiliate you, or to justify their abuse toward you (i.e. suggesting you ‘deserve’ to be mistreated because of your disability)
  • Suggesting your disability limits your abilities to be a good partner or parent
  • Threatening to or refusing to help you complete necessary life tasks when your partner had previously agreed to
  • Instigates sexual activity even when you are unable to give consent
  • Threatening to harm or harming your service animal
  • Withholding or damaging assistive devices

Additional Resources:

Adult Protective Services
Abused Deaf Women’s Advocacy Services
Safety Planning for Domestic Violence Victims with Disabilities

***The community-specific bulletpoints and Additional Resources come from the National Domestic Violence Hotline***