How to Spot an Unhealthy Relationship

It can be difficult to spot abusive behavior in a relationship, particularily when you are a victim. However, in order to get help it is essential to acknowledge that this behaviour can display itself in more than just physical ways. Here are some resources describing what to look for in a relationship:

Communication and Dealing with Arguments

Communication is good for all relationships, and involves letting the other person or persons know how you’re feeling. Be it through speech, written words, body language, touch or some other way, communication is key to a healthy relationship. No matter how uncomfortable it may feel, being honest about how we feel is important for fostering trust.

However, sometimes people clash and arguments occur. Communication is key for resolving conflict. Here are some good guides for conflict resolution from Brook and Scarleteen.

For more information and resources:

  • 36 QuestionsLooking for a way to start a conversation and learn more about one another? Based upon a study by Arthur Aron, these questions are a good starting point for building closeness.
  • LoveSmart- Fantastic resource from The Mix on all periods of relationships.
  • Relationship NegotiationBishUK’s guide to negotiation and communication.
  • Relationship CheckupSome questions about your relationship that you can go through with your partner(s).
  • Arguing and Conflict- Information and support from Relate UK.

Communication is especially important in polyamorous relationships. Polyamory does not mean anything goes, many poly relationships have certain agreements and boundaries in place. Non-monogamous relationships involve informed consent. For more information on polyamory check here; and for troubleshooting and navigating poly relationships, look here.



Abuse and Other Relationship Problems

If you are in immediate danger call 999.

You do not have to wait for an emergency situation to seek help. If you are being abused it is important to tell someone. You can:

  • Talk to your GP
  • Women can call 0808 2000 247, the free 24-hour National Domestic Violence Helpline.
  • Men can call Men’s Advice Line on 0808 801 0327 Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm. They can also email , which can refer men to local places that can help.
  • LGBT individuals can call 0800 999 5428 during these hours

There is more than one type of abuse:

  • Physical
  • Verbal or Emotional
  • Sexual
  • Digital
  • Stalking
  • Financial

No one deserves abuse and no one should have to put up with it. Abuse can happen to anyone, regardless of age, gender, race, religion or any other factor, and if it’s happening to you it is not your fault. Furthermore, abuse can happen in any type of relationship, not just romantic ones. 

For more information and support:



Breaking Up with a Partner

If you would like to talk to someone about  a difficult breakup or other relationship problems you might be having, you are welcome to come to Student Services to talk to one of our Advisers or Counsellors. You can drop in to make an appointment either at The ASC (the Advice and Support Centre) at 79 North Street, or our offices at Eden Court on The Scores. Alternatively; you can emailbook an appointment online or phone at 01334 462020.

The end of a relationship can be difficult and isn’t always clear-cut. Deciding it’s the right time to end something it can be easy but more often than not we feel torn about what to do. Scarleteen has a great resource on whether or not it is time to end things. If you are being abused or in an abusive relationship, seek help and make a safety plan to get out.

For more information and resources: