According to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary love is “…a strong affection for another arising out of kinship or personal ties, attraction based on sexual desire, or affection based on admiration, benevolence, or common interests.”
We’ve heard that love is patient, love is kind, and love is the beauty of the soul. Love is a lot of things, but love is never abuse. For Valentine’s Day, a day that so many celebrate love, we at Hubbard House, the domestic violence center serving Duval and Baker counties, want everyone to really think about what love is.
Love in healthy relationships is respectful. It is free from physical, mental, emotional, psychological, and digital abuse. Here are characteristics of a healthy relationship:
- Being willing to compromise with each other.
- Accepting change.
- Making relationship/family decisions together.
- Talking and acting in a way that makes each other feel safe and comfortable.
- Listening to each other non-judgmentally.
- Valuing each other’s opinions, supporting each other’s goals, and respecting each other’s rights to your own feelings, friends, and activities.
- Admitting when you are wrong.
- Communicating openly and truthfully.
ABOUT HUBBARD HOUSE: Founded as the first domestic violence shelter in Florida in 1976, Hubbard House is a certified, comprehensive domestic violence center providing programs and services to more than 6,000 women, children, and men annually in Duval and Baker counties. While Hubbard House is most known for its emergency shelter, the agency also provides extensive adult and youth outreach services, school-based education, therapeutic childcare, batterers’ intervention programs, court advocacy and volunteer and community education opportunities. Visit www.hubbardhouse.org to learn more.
By Katie Swanson