Teen Dating Abuse: Are You Missing the Signs In Your Teenager? by Donna John
Many of us think of physical violence when we think of abuse when in fact, there’s a much more common and equally dangerous threat to your child, emotional abuse, says author Amy Feliner Dominy. According to SafeYouth.com, 96 percent of teens say they’ve been emotionally or psychologically abused by a dating partner. Here are six signs to look for:
- Sudden changes in appearance, diet or sleeping habits
- A drop in grades or less participation in outside or school activities
- Avoiding friends or family
- Becoming secretive or withdrawn
- Making excuses for the dating partner
- Constantly checking cell phone or email and responding immediately when contacted by dating partner
If you suspect your child might be in an unhealthy relationship, Dominy says to approach the discussion from a place of curiosity rather than blame; focus on your teen and not the abuser; and ask questions like, "How is your relationship going?" To get help for your teen or for more information, visit ThatsNotCool.com and Loveisrespect.org.
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