A healthy relationship makes you feel good about yourself and your partner. You have fun together and you and your partner can be yourselves.
A good sexual relationship takes work and communication. If you pretend that everything feels good, your partner will take the wrong cues. Sex should make both partners feel good and you should both feel comfortable bringing issues up if or when there are any.
Commitment and time invested in a relationship can help to make communication easier and build trust, which makes talking about sex and navigating any potential risks of sexual activity easier.
The opposite of a healthy relationship is an abusive relationship. Abusive relationships often revolve around control, fear, and lack of respect.
They can involve threats, name-calling, blaming, guilt-tripping, jealous questioning, and violence, and a feeling of having to “walk on eggshells” around your partner, among other feelings.
If you think you are in an abusive relationship, or suspect someone you know is in this type of relationship, a social worker, counsellor, or doctor can help you.
Having sex with someone you just met may make these conversations a bit more difficult, leaving you feeling less in control, and potentially more vulnerable to STIs, an unplanned pregnancy, and/or sexual assault, especially if your judgment is clouded by the effects of alcohol or drugs.
The opportunities for misunderstanding one another, or taking on unexpected risks, are higher the less you know your partner. It takes time to build trust. The benefit of technologies and the ease of online dating can mislead us into trusting someone before meeting them in person. Learn more in our section on Online Safety.