As a speaker on the subject of Teen Dating Relationships: Violence and Emotional Wellness, I thought that it was important to celebrate Teen Dating Violence Awareness Month with a blog post.
So, I went digging for a spark of some sort that would be relevant and that would keep me concentrated on more statistical information than a personal reflection of my own past. Of course, what I came across frustrated me and so I will birth a balance of information that I hope will empower teenagers to think outside of the box, and create their own terms for stability in love.
Here is a video of a quick media interview that I think should spark an interesting debate.
Amanda Bynes an actress shared back in 2008 that she partnered with Mark Kay and Break the Cycle to end teen dating violence. She did not reveal any experience with it, however she urged viewers to go to enddatingviolence.com to sign a petition to get classes into schools. I’m alittle disappointed that they chose a person who had not had any experience with it but I digress.
I am a teen dating violence survivor. I am not going to share the story here, but I detail a few of my experiences with teen dating violence in my book, Identity Crisis, Identity Christ Is: A Journey to Love. It is a candid view of my life from around age four to present day. During the teen years, I really went through some challenges with relationships.
Deidre Fitzpatrick asked Amanda Bynes “You’re closer to that age group than I am, tell me why do you think this is happening?” To answer her question, Amanda Bynes said she thought that children were, “Bored.”
I would personally like to stop there. Children who are committing acts of violence against other children are not simply acting out of boredom. Some people are bored and they therefore read a book. Boredom is not the cause for violent actions. Idle time could be the opportunity which presents itself for someone who possesses certain thoughts, to act them out.
One in three teenagers will have experienced teen dating violence in their relationships. If one in four girls, and one in six boys will experience child sexual abuse, and/or some sort of sexual violence during their life time, it is highly probable, that many of the teens who are committing acts of emotional or domestic (teen dating) kinds of abuse, have been abused themselves by a family member or friend.
It is crucially important that we take the time to talk to our children about how to form relationships, how to identify what we term as “red flags”, and how to develop healthy relationships so that when they see, hear, or understand that they are being treated in a way that is not healthy, they will gather their strength a have the vibrancy to walk away.
We will talk more this month about Teen Dating Violence, so that we can make sure that our teens are not only being treated with love and respect, but that our teens are equally treating others the way that we desire them to be treated when we are not around them.
Teens are not just bored, they are misinformed and are learning how to relate to others by what they see at home, and around them on a daily basis. The impressions are in the violent video games, the parent’s arguments, the movies and the views that they are given about how to cherish another human being.
I believe that Teen Dating Violence, is a reflection of the entire community and it is imperative that we continue to have conversations with teens that we are connected to so that they can have a full scope of love, respect and relationships.
- What’s February? TDVAM! (startstrongaustintx.wordpress.com)
- White Ribbon Tip of Week (thepaolite.wordpress.com)
- How to Protect Your Child from Teen Dating Violence (jenniferalley.wordpress.com)
- Newhouse 4 Teens Announces Teen Dating Violence Prevention Resource (prweb.com)
- NIJ study: Positive Findings for Reducing Teen Dating Violence/Harassment (prweb.com)
- Hazelden Publishing and Break the Cycle Join Forces to Create New Teen Dating Violence Prevention Program (prweb.com)
- Sample Proclamation for Teen Dating Violence Awareness Month (preventviolence.wordpress.com)
- Dating Violence Common Among Teens (education.com)
- Sexual Coercion and Teen Dating Violence (preventviolence.wordpress.com)
- February is National Teen Dating Violence Awareness and Prevention Month (marissavelarde.wordpress.com)