February is Teen dating violence awareness & prevention month
Teen dating violence is a common problem. Youth in nearly every community in the nation is affected. Here are some astonishing statistics about teen dating violence...
KNOW THE SIGNS
Does your boyfriend/girlfriend:
Look at you or act in ways that scare you?
Act jealous or possessive?
Put you down or criticize you?
Try to control where you go, what you wear or what you do?
Texts or IM's you excessively?
Blame you for "making" them treat you badly?
Threaten to kill or hurt you or themselves if you leave them?
Try to stop you from seeing or talking to friends and family?
Try to force or guilt you into sexual activity?
If you said yes to even one, you may be in an abusive relationship
DATING VIOLENCE 101
Dating violence is a pattern of abusive behaviors used to exert power and control over a dating partner. Dating violence warning signs include intimidation, sexual abuse, possessiveness, physical abuse, threats, domination, humiliation, minimization and blame. Every relationship is different, but the things that unhealthy and abusive relationships have in common are issues of power and control. Violent words and actions are tools an abusive partner uses to gain and maintain power and control over their partner. A relationship full of control is really out of control...
Teen dating violence can be prevented, especially when there is a focus on reducing the risk factors, as well as practicing protective behaviors. Teens are empowered through family, friends and others to lead healthy lives and establish healthy relationships. Healthy relationshihps are based on equality, open communication, respect for boundaries and trust and commitment. In the strongest relationships, respect can't be beat.
Here are some websites to help promote teen dating violence awareness and prevention in February as well as throughout the year.
www.loveisrespect.org: If you or someone you know has a question about a relationship, text "loveis" to 22522.