Preventing Teen Dating Violence

Preventing Teen Dating Violence

LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) - More than 1 in 10 teens who date has been physically abused by a boyfriend or a girlfriend in the last year.

February is Teen Dating Violence Awareness Month. It's a national effort to protect teens from violence.

Here's one suggestion from a Lubbock Pediatrician. Dr. Michael Gomez, a Texas Tech Physician, says instead of thinking of the "birds and the bees" as the big talk, parents can prepare kids for better dating relationships if they start early with lots of little talks.

He says, "Even children that are very young, like 3, we want them to know the anatomically correct names for  the private parts. We also find that that helps with decreasing the victimization, even things like sexual violence later in life down the road."

Dr. Gomez says kids should know that an abusive relationship can cover a wide range of aggression, from hitting to yelling to spreading rumors or blasting people on Facebook.

He says it helps to explain relationships to children by comparing them to colors.

He says a green relationship describes a behavior full of compromise, finding common ground and negotiations.

A yellow relationship reflects a behavior that is very defensive or stone walling.

A red relationship would be one that involves physical violence, cursing, or cheating.

Dr. Gomez says he hopes kids would be comfortable in going to a parent with concerns about a relationship.

However, kids who feel they want to reach out for help, can also text or call @loveisrespect's helpline: External Links Disclaimer Logo #datingviolence External Links Disclaimer Logo.

Also, the National Domestic Violence Hotline number is 1-800-799-SAFE.

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