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280 Kane St. STE #2
South Williamsport, PA
United States

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Teen Dating Violence Awareness Month

One in three high school students will experience some form of dating violence in their relationships. One in ten high school students has been purposefully hit, slapped or physically hurt by a boyfriend or girlfriend. According to breakthecycle.org 81% of parents said they didn’t think or didn’t know if dating violence was a problem. For

One in three high school students will experience some form of dating violence in their relationships. One in ten high school students has been purposefully hit, slapped or physically hurt by a boyfriend or girlfriend.

According to breakthecycle.org 81% of parents said they didn’t think or didn’t know if dating violence was a problem. For parents and teens, being able to tell the difference between healthy, unhealthy and abusive relationships can be difficult, but recognition is key. Although there are many signs to pay attention to in a relationship, look for these common warning signs of dating abuse:

• Checking cell phones, emails or social networks without permission
• Extreme jealousy or insecurity
• Constant belittling or put-downs
• Explosive temper
• Isolation from family and friends
• Making false accusations
• Erratic mood swings
• Physically inflicting pain or hurt in any way
• Possessiveness
• Telling someone what to do
• Repeatedly pressuring someone to have sex

If you see any of these signs please make sure that you talk with your child about it immediately. It is important that teens understand that this behavior is not OK and that they don’t have to accept it.

It is also important that teens understand the difference between healthy, unhealthy, and abusive relationships. They need to understand and recognize the signs of abuse so they can get out of the relationship and seek help if needed. Whether they are in a serious relationship or casually dating, teens should understand that all relationships should be free of fear, and that healthy relationships are built on trust, honesty, and communication. That the people involved are respectful of one another, their privacy and their boundaries. Relationships are meant to be fun! They should make you happy!

A relationship should never be filled with jealousy, or a lack of trust. You shouldn’t be made to feel guilty or like your thoughts, ideas or feelings don’t matter.

They should certainly never be violent, disrespectful or degrading.

Never ignore a gut feeling. If you suspect your teen or a teen you know is involved in an abusive relationship, step in now.

The impact of teen dating violence is severe. Among high school students who have experienced sexual and physical abuse by a dating partner, 9 out of 10 have seriously contemplated suicide, and over 80% have attempted suicide.

Teens should also understand that having disagreements with a partner isn’t uncommon, but the key is how you react to the disagreements. Knowing how to resolve conflict in a healthy way is something that will serve teens well today and in adulthood.

The YWCA, as always, is a great resource for help with teen dating violence.

Wise Options Prevention Educator Brady Huff is available to do presentations across Lycoming County about dating violence and healthy relationships. To schedule a presentation for your class, club, or scout troop, please contact Huff at 570-322-4637 ext. 112 or bhuff@ywcawilliamsport.org.

As a way to provide a safe place for teenagers, the YWCA started a free after school program for seventh-12th grade students. The program is on Mondays through Fridays from 3-5:30 p.m. at the YWCA, 815 W. Fourth St.

Students will have the opportunity to get help with homework, socialize, play basketball and unwind after a long day at school.

To register for the program, parents can visit http://www.ywcawilliamsport.org to download a form that must be completed for a child to attend the program.

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