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Healthy relationships for young people

Relationships can be important for young people and they should be fun and enjoyable. They can also help us to find out things about ourselves, make us smile, lead to new experiences and give us happy memories. They should be equal, supportive, free from pressure or violence and safe. In short, they should be healthy.

However, sometimes people don’t enjoy the relationship they’re in and feel under pressure to do things they don’t want to do or make decisions they don’t want to make. These relationships can be unhealthy and organisations such as Brook can offer useful advice and information.

What to do if you’re concerned about your own or someone else’s relationship

If a relationship isn’t healthy, staying in it could mean that there is a higher risk of experiencing some form of emotional, physical, psychological or sexual abuse or violence.

If someone feels that they are in an unhealthy relationship, it’s important to have some advice about what to do. It’s also important to have someone to talk to about what is happening, this could be someone on the phone like Survive, Brook or ChildLine, or it could be someone in person, like your school health nurse, learning mentor, youth worker, teacher or social worker.

What to do in an emergency

If you, or someone you know, are being threatened or are in danger, you should phone the Police (999) or ART (Access and response team) straight away. These are the people who will help to keep you safe.

What to do if you have experienced sexual assault or rape

If you have experienced sexual assault or rape there are people who can provide support, advice and a safe place to go.

Organisations such as Childline, The NSPCC and Survive have telephone helplines that you can ring confidentially.

SARSAS (Somerset & Avon rape and sexual abuse support) and The Bridge are Bristol-based services that also support young people in South Gloucestershire. These organisations are very experienced at working with young people and will be in a position to provide support.

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