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Cycles of Relationships


Healthy Relationships Are....


  • No acts of violence (physical, verbal, emotional, academic)

  • Feelings of hope and commitment for the relationship

  • A sense of security for the future

  • The ability to grow emotionally as an individual.


Tension Builds
  • Feelings include disappointment, frustration, etc. 

  • Questioning your partner's response to a decision 

  • Questioning your partner’s words and or actions

  • Including frustration from other areas of life (work, finance, etc.)

  • Saying things you will regret later


  • Compromise doesn't mean surrender

  • If you wouldn't lie to your best friend, teammate, etc. Why lie to your partner?

  • Avoid being accusatory

  • Avoid developing a memory bank of previous behavior and experiences without expressing your feelings at the time. The quicker you talk disagreements out, the more likely they won't occur


  • An apology is not a sign of weakness. It is also should not be used as a method of quickly  putting things  in the  past 

  • Avoid telling your partner what they want to hear. It's a benign way of lying

  • Develop a memory of how the disagreement/situation emotionally affected you and your partner 

  • Remember why you considered them in the first place – why you wanted them in your life



Unhealthy Relationships Are...


Keeps you fearful and off balance both emotionally and psychologically.  



  • abuser starts to get angry

  • threats, verbal insults 

  • fear, guilt – feel like you are “walking on egg shells”

  • unpredictable behavior



Abuse Occurs
  • any incident of physical, psychological, emotional abuse

  • may include financial abuse



Making Amends
  • abuser apologizes for abuse

  • abuser promises it won’t happen again

  • may buy gifts, flowers etc to say “ I am sorry”

  • may try to blame victim for the abusive behavior



  • similar to making amends cycle

  • promises made during the making amends cycle may be met

  • abuser may act like the abuse never happened

  • victim may hope that the abuse is over

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