Parents urged to start conversation with teens about dating violence

February is Teen Dating Violence Awareness Month
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Posted at 6:38 AM, Feb 19, 2022
and last updated 2022-07-24 00:14:07-04

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — February is Teen Dating Violence Awareness Month and advocates hope parents will talk with their teens about it.

Having that conversation can make a huge difference in helping your teen understand what to look out for and why. Prevention starts with understanding the signs, symptoms and causes of teen dating violence, and what you can do to help as a parent.

Common signals include physical and sexual violence, psychological aggression and stalking.

A 2019 survey of high school students in the state found one in 11 female and one in 14 male high school students had experienced physical dating violence. The survey also found that 25% of women and 15% of men will have their first experience before they turn 18.

Experts said if it’s left unaddressed, it could lead to anxiety and depression or substance abuse, which is why starting a conversation is critically important.

Call the Child Advocacy Center at 615-867-9000 for a list of national and local resources to make starting and continuing the conversation easier for both parents and teens.

For more information on teen dating violence, visit Love is Respect or the CDC website.