Safe Dating

Older Youth, Parents

Warning Signs of Unsafe Dating

  • Tells you what you can & cannot say
  • Does not like when you spend time with friends
  • Makes you account for where you have been & who you have been with
  • Calls you all the time
  • Hangs out around your home, school, or job for no good reason
  • Makes you feel tense and afraid
  • Wants you to spend all your free time with him/her
  • Plays mind games to trap or trick you into saying or doing what he/she wants
  • Puts you down verbally – calls you names, ridicules you, or is highly critical of you
  • Discounts your feelings, your words, or your behavior
  • Blames you for anything that goes wrong
  • Threatens you
  • Becomes angry over small things
  • Behaves in ways that feel scary, so you change how you act to keep him/her calm
  • Does drugs and/or drinks a lot
  • Pressures you to do things that are against the law
  • Pressures you sexually or has bullied/forced you into having sex
  • Shoves, pushes, kicks, slaps or hits you

(Crompton, V.)

Teen Dating Rights

“I have the right to…”

  • To be treated with respect
  • Not to be abused – physically, emotionally or sexually
  • To say NO & be heard
  • To express my own opinions
  • To private time & my own space
  • To have my needs considered as much as my partner’s
  • To have friends of my own
  • To pursue my own special interests & not to be criticized for pursuing them
  • To accept a gift with out having to give anything in return
  • To hear about my strengths & assets
  • To ask others for help if I need it
  • To change my mind – to “fall out of love” & live with no threats

(Sperekas, N.)

Ways to be a Good Friend

  • Listen & believe
  • Encourage them to tell an adult
  • Encourage them to leave
  • Help them realize abusive behaviors
  • Tell them they deserve better
  • Tell an adult yourself

Dating Violence Myths

  • It does not affect many people or only occurs among those who hang out in bars, are poor, or are people of color
  • It does not occur in gay and lesbian relationships
  • Men are never victims
  • Victims are free to leave at any time
  • Victims are mentally ill
  • This type of violence is only a momentary loss of temper


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