Keep Teen Dating Safe
Dating violence among teens is not just physical violence, but also verbal, sexual, and/or emotional abuse. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control has evidence-based help to assist parents and guardians with materials that are worth exploring that can help reduce risks. Key themes in these materials include being proactive at helping teens understand what a healthy relationship looks like and that everyone is entitled to a healthy relationship; discussing positive behaviors and learning how to “trust one’s gut or inner voice” as to what behaviors are not okay; and other guidance. Although experts disagree on aspects of teen dating—ideal age to start, forms of dating, and frequency—being victim of dating violence in the formative years of adolescence can lead to depression, suicidal thoughts, substance abuse, and anxiety, as well as increased risk of victimization in future relationships. Learn more from the CDC’s Veto Violence resource.
Keith Stein |