When evaluating any relationship, whether it be romantic, friendship, or even a familial, it is important to consider the healthiness of the relationship. As humans, we often want to feel loved, respected, and to feel supported by the people in our lives. By establishing healthy relationships, again, regardless of the type of relationship, these healthy relationships allow us to feel good about ourselves and even provide us with positive self-esteem and can help build confidence in ourselves. Does a healthy relationship mean that it is a “perfect” relationship? No, of course not! Relationships are not perfect, as we are human and have our imperfect moments. Instead, good, healthy relationships are built with a few characteristics, here are a few to get you started:
Now that we understand what a healthy relationship should look like, how about we consider what a healthy relationship should look like in the people living with disabilities community—I’ll give you a hint—It should look the same as someone who does not have a disability! Some of the current stereotypes that plague the people with disabilities community regarding love and relationships is that they should be “with their own kind”, or that when they are dating or romantically involved with someone who does not have a disability, that there is an alternative reason as to why they are together. These stereotypes and prejudices are so damaging. Having a physical or intellectual disability does not diminish the need or desire for a healthy relationship. Remember, no relationship is going to be “perfect” or look perfect, but all relationships can be amazing with the right foundation.