Statistics show that 1 in 3 adolescents in the U.S. is a victim of physical, sexual, emotional or verbal abuse from a dating partner. According to CrimeStoppers.org, Teen
Dating Violence looks like:
Physical: Pinching, Hitting, Shoving, Slapping, Punching, Kicking, Throwing objects, Biting, Blocking you from leaving a room, Using a weapon, etc.
Psychological: Threatening to hurt themselves, you or others, Name calling, Shaming, Bullying, Put downs, Embarrassing on purpose, Keeping you away from friends and/or family, Trying to control what you do or wear, etc.
Sexual: Forcing you to engage in a sexual act when you don't consent, Kissing or touching you when you don't want it, Birth control sabotage, Coercion and/or spreading rumors if you refuse to have sex or persuading you to go further sexually, Leaving unwanted marks or hickies, Taking and/or distributing naked pictures of you without your permission, etc.
Electronic or Digital: Repeated texting and calling, Posting sexual pictures of you online, Posting lies about you, Demanding passwords, Checking your phone to see who you are communicating with, etc. Stalking: A pattern of harassing or threatening tactics that are unwanted and cause fear in the victim.
Parents should talk with their teens before they start dating. Discussions should include what a healthy relationship vs an unhealthy relationship looks like, also what to do if they are in a situation where they feel unsafe. Teens should feel comfortable talking with a parent or another trusted adult if they feel something is not right.
Remember treating each other with respect is key! Stay focused on your goals, if someone cares for you they will support you!