In Focus

Healthy Relationships

What could be more challenging than teaching young people about healthy adult relationships? Those of us that have teenagers and maybe have had a few dysfunctional relationships in our time may well know what not to do, but in this modern world it all seems vastly different to our experiences, or is it? BGS enlisted the help of Family Planning Victoria to come along and work with our young men to discuss what constitute healthy adult, romantic relationships.

Bonnie, the facilitator, clearly has a wealth of experiences working with young men in this area.  She dealt with the boys’ questions around sex and relationships in a positive and supportive manner.  The boys enjoyed the use of humour to cover the extremely important area of consent, likening it to a bike ride – people who are drunk can’t consent to a bike ride – and so on.  Bonnie further illustrated consent with both verbal and non-verbal cues.  The boys participated in scenarios that demonstrated these cues clearly.

They were also challenged about what constitutes a healthy relationship and how relationships are portrayed in the media.  Many relationships modelled in film and print are dysfunctional.  They have manipulation and dominance thus the people involved are clearly not in a healthy relationship.  So, what is? The boys clearly articulated what they would expect from their partners and what they would give in a relationship.  Their discussions clearly demonstrate that they understood what constitutes a healthy and respectful relationship.

Bonnie was incredibly impressed by the level of maturity of our young men.  They are the type of men that are going to change the world’s perception of men and how they relate to women and each other.  Having the privilege of working with our young men every day I am not surprised by this response from someone outside our community.  This experience clearly demonstrates that we are living the moto ‘Growing Good Men’.

Further resources for discussing healthy relationships with your teenager can be found at:

https://www.fpv.org.au/for-you

Consent is like a bike ride…

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-JwlKjRaUaw

Ms Delanie Lewis
Head of Forsyth House