6. Healthy relationships
As we get older, we develop relationships with lots of different people. Each relationship will be different, some will be healthy and will make you feel good about yourself, whilst others can go wrong along the way and may make you feel uncomfortable, unhappy or scared.
It’s important to stay safe especially if you’re worried or feel a relationship may be going wrong. The information below gives advice on what is a healthy relationship and where to go for more advice.
Consent means agreeing to do something. Sex is only ever okay if both people involved want to have sex. This video from Thames Valley Police discusses the issue of consent.
Child Sexual Exploitation (CSE)
Sometimes, people might want to take advantage of you and ask you to do sexual things and you might find yourself in dangerous situations without even realising it. This is called child sexual exploitation (CSE) and it’s not okay for this to happen to a young person. In fact it is abuse and young people have the right to be safe from it.
How does it happen?
At first, a young person may like, respect, or even think they are falling in love with the person exploiting them. This is because they are ‘groomed’ over time. This process involves making them feel ‘special’, so they become attached. But later, the behaviour of the abuser starts to change, often slowly. By this point, the young person is likely to feel trapped, isolated and scared, and they may find it difficult to acknowledge that they are no longer comfortable in the relationship.