Now that February 14th is almost here we have to think about our children’s relationships, is hard to perceive any kind of abuse if there is no communication, but even if the proper channels are not open to have a talk with them, there are warning signs every parent must be aware of.
Have you ever seen your teenage “sweetheart”:
- • Try to stop him/her from seeing or talking to family or friends?
- • Called him/her derogatory nicknames, put him/her down, or made fun of him/her?
- • Threaten or scare him/her?
- • Bite, slap, push, hit or kick him/her?
- • Pressure or force him/her to do something sexual when is clear he/she doesn’t want to?
- • Humiliate him/her when alone or in front of others?
- • Control him/her on what to wear, or what to do?
Well, those are signs of dating violence, and you should seek advice or help from a school counselor, doctor, therapist or family pediatrician.
Did you know that nearly 1.5 million high school students in the United States reported that they have been emotionally or psychologically mistreated, harmed, stalked, manipulated, or pressured in some way by their dating partner?
And guess what? Many teens do not report it because they are afraid to tell friends and family. “A 2017 CDC Report[PDF 4.32MB] found that approximately 7% of women and 4% of men who ever experienced rape, physical violence, or stalking by an intimate partner first experienced some form of partner violence by that partner before 18 years of age.”
Unhealthy, abusive, or violent relationships can have severe consequences on a developing teen. Youth who experience dating violence are more likely to experience symptoms of depression, anxiety, thoughts about suicide and are at risk for victimization during college years.
I want to share with you the following video form One Love Foundation, an organization honoring the memory of Yeardly Love, a college student beaten to death by her ex boyfriend.
Yeardley Love was killed and her death was avoidable if anyone in her life had truly understood the unhealthy and increasingly dangerous relationship behaviors they were seeing
Dating violence can be prevented, talk to your teenagers about it.
Where to seek help
Everyone deserves a relationship that is positive, healthy and free from violence. If you have concerns about your relationship or your teenage relationship, Hotline advocates are available to help 24/7 at 1-800-799-7233 or via live chat from 7 a.m. to 2 a.m. Central time.