Students learn about healthy relationships



The UNI Student Wellness Service presented information on what makes relationships healthy and to recognize abuse on Tuesday, Feb. 14.

SYDNEY HAUER, Executive Editor | [email protected]

Fourteen students gathered on Tuesday, Feb. 13, to hear Joan Thompson, health promotion coordinator for UNI Student Wellness Services, present information about what makes a relationship healthy and how to better recognize abuse within relationships.

Healthy Relationships was put on by UNI Proud, the organization of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, pansexual, intersex, asexual and ally students on campus (LGBTQPIA). The event was held from 7 to 8 p.m. in the Oak Room in the lower level of Maucker Union.

Thompson’s presentation involved several different activities to help enrich understanding about what makes a healthful relationship and to help give students the tools to identify when they are in an abusive relationship.

Thompson discussed the importance of respect, setting boundaries, identifying sexual, emotional, physical and verbal abuse and recognizing what healthy relationships ideally look like.

Students in attendance actively and eagerly participated in discussion and activities.

One of the activities involved “boundary prompts” being read aloud. Students stood in a line and were asked to step forward or backward with whether or not a prompt pushed their personal boundaries.

“I just hope that others walked away with more skills to be able to recognize when they are in a relationship that either isn’t satisfying them or is unhealthy for them,” said Emmett Cory, junior psychology major and treasurer of UNI Proud. “A lot of people just don’t think about this kind of thing.”  

Cory went on to stress the importance of setting boundaries and recognizing them before they are violated.

Selena Carlson is the president of UNI Proud, and a junior studying biology and chemistry.

“I thought it was definitely a good event with Valentine’s Day coming up,” Carlson said. “It’s sometimes hard to identify issues when you’re in a situation like that, so I’m sure it’s good for all of us to hear.”

Cory also highlighted the added benefit of addressing these issues with LGBTQ individuals, who are often ignored and underrepresented in such conversations.

“With the LGBTQ community being underserved in that aspect, I think it’s really important to cater to that community, especially in smaller spaces like this,” Cory said.

UNI Proud will be hosting “Queer Sex Ed,” with Unity Point/Allen Women’s Health as a guest speaker on March 6. They will also be holding their annual “Pride Week” during the first week of April, featuring events such as the drag ball, a keynote speaker, queer monologues, a film screening and progressive prom.

The group holds weekly meetings on Tuesdays at 7 p.m. in the Oak Room.