Expert explains signs of an unhealthy relationship

What is a healthy relationship?

LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) - Valentine’s Day is approaching and it’s easy to get caught up in the material things, but how do we know if we’re in a healthy relationship?

Julie Ireland, a provisional licensed professional counselor says to watch out for a cycle of abuse.

“There’s the escalation phase and there’s the violence phase,” Ireland said. “Violence meaning it could be yelling, it could be screaming, it could be throwing, or more physical life-threatening violence.”

Ireland says arguments are unavoidable, but it’s been executed.

“Communicating, listening, no name-calling. There’s a lot of things that you shouldn’t do in the fair fighting rules” Ireland said. “I always tell couples if you’re not fighting, you’re in more trouble than if you are fighting. It’s not if we fight, it’s how we fight that’s important.”

Ireland says the key is communication.

Communication is a very tough one for couples," Ireland said. “A lot of times we are speaking different languages about all different types of things, so really sitting down and working on those listening skills can really improve a relationship.”

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