Teen Dating Violence Awareness
Morgan Boles, Advocate/Program Coordinator
Love is RESPECT
February is teen dating violence awareness month. Every year we like to take this time to talk about this issue and bring more awareness to some of the hardships facing teens. Abuse does not discriminate based on age (or anything for that matter!). Nearly 1 in 11 female and approximately 1 in 14 male high school students report having experienced physical dating violence in the last year*.
As teenagers begin to navigate the world of dating, it is so important to educate them on what healthy dating relationships look like. Often parents or guardians are
hesitant to address these issues and would rather not talk about it, but neglecting to inform the teenagers around you leaves them at risk of being manipulated, abuse, or in an unsafe and unhealthy relationship.
*Interpersonal Violence Victimization Among High School Students-Youth Risk Behavior Survey (Basile, Clayton, DeGue, Gilford, Vagi, Suarez,& Lowry. 2020)
What does TDV look like?
Teen Dating Violence can look like:
Physical violence: When a person hurts or tries to hurt a partner by hitting, kicking, or using another type of physical force.
Sexual violence: Forcing or attempting to force a partner to take part in a sex act or sexual touching when the partner does not or cannot consent. It also includes non-physical sexual behaviors like posting or sharing sexual pictures of a partner without their consent or sexting someone without their consent. *In the state of Georgia, any private picture of someone under the age of 18 is considered child pornography regardless of if the individual consented to the photo, distribution of this photo is considered distribution of child pornography*
Psychological aggression: The use of verbal and non-verbal communication with the intent to harm a partner mentally or emotionally and/or exert control over a partner.
Stalking: A pattern of repeated, unwanted attention and contact by a partner that causes fear or concern for one's own safety or the safety of someone close to the victim.
Teen Dating Violence Protective Order
The Supreme Court of Georgia just recently ordered that courts across the state approve TDV forms such as:
Petition for Dating Violence Temporary Protective Order
Dating Violence Ex Parte Protective Order
Dating Violence Twelve Month Protective Order
This approval enables courts (beginning 3/1/2022) to better serve and support teen dating violence victims! There are options and there is help out there for teens experiencing this type of victimization!
National Teen Dating Abuse Helpline
The national teen dating abuse helpline is a 24 hour national web-based and telephone helpline created to help teens (ages 13-18) experiencing dating abuse.
Peer advocates are available to chat at www.loveisrespect.org
Text "loveis" to 22522