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Category: News

February 1, 2014

The National Network to End Domestic Violence (NNEDV) is recognizing February as Teen Dating Violence Awareness Month.

Dating violence is widespread among teens and young adults, affecting 1 in 3 girls in the US [1] and nearly 1.5 million high school students each year. [2] Yet only 33% of teens who were in an abusive relationship ever disclosed the abuse. [3]

It’s Time to Talk.

With active participation, discussion, education, and action we can all raise awareness and promote safety for the teens and young adults we care about.

So, what is dating violence? Dating violence is a pattern of abusive behaviors used to exert power and control over a dating partner. The pattern is different in every relationship, but usually escalates over time, becoming more and more dangerous.

What does dating violence look like? Dating violence can be physical abuse, verbal or emotional abuse, sexual abuse, or abuse facilitated through technology. Check out the Teen Dating Violence Month website for ten warning signs of dating violence.

Get involved: There are tons of ways to get involved, raise awareness, and promote safety this month.

February 4th is It’s Time to Talk Day. Teens and young adults need to know that it’s not their fault when their dating partner is controlling or abusive, and that they can always talk to someone who will listen and help. Take the Pledge to Talk and check out the How to Start a Conversation guide.

Events are being held across the country to mark It’s Time to Talk Day. Check out this map of events to find one near you! Can’t find an event near you, or want to host your own? Sign up host a Talk-A-Thon and receive a free Talk-A-Thon Guide or contact your local state domestic violence coalition.

Wear Orange February 11th. Loveisrespect is encouraging their Facebook fans to promote respect and healthy relationships by wearing orange this February. Sign up to show your support – while you’re at it, take the Dating Pledge to keep your relationship healthy.

Get help: Have a question or need help? Text, chat, or call the National Dating Abuse Helpline 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Learn more from Break The Cycle, your local state domestic violence coalition, or Safety Net's Tech Savvy Teens handout

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[1] The National Council on Crime and Delinquency Focus, Antoinette Davis, MPP, “Interpersonal and Physical Dating Violence among Teens,” http://www.nccdglobal.org/sites/default/files/publication_pdf/focus-dating-violence.pdf.

[2] Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “Physical Dating Violence Among High School Students—United States, 2003,” Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, May 19, 2006, Vol. 55, No. 19, http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/mm5519a3.htm.

[3] Liz Claiborne, Inc., conducted by Teenage Research Unlimited, (February 2005).