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LETTER: February is Teen Dating Violence Awareness Month
LETTER

LETTER: February is Teen Dating Violence Awareness Month

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As a parent/guardian, you want to see your child happy and safe in their relationships. Here are ideas on preventing abuse and supporting teens in unhealthy relationships:

  • Model healthy relationships: Youth learn a lot by observing those around them; those they respect can especially make a great impact.
  • Use teachable moments in the media: Ask them what they think about how relationships are portrayed, how they want to be treated, and how they could support a friend that’s getting hurt by a partner.
  • If your gut is telling you something isn’t right with their relationship, address it with them: They may be uncomfortable discussing it so beginning the conversation with love and concern, not blame or anger, will help.
  • Help them find resources: Our kids don’t always want to talk to us so help them identify other people they could talk to, such as a school counselor, health care provider, loveisrespect.org, or Hope House.

If you have questions or concerns regarding relationships for your child or yourself, Hope House is available 24/7 to help with safety planning, emotional support and finding resources by calling 1-800-584-6790. Learn about getting involved, such as wearing orange on Feb. 11, at hopehousescw.org/teen-dating-violence.

Sarah Campbell, Hope House of South Central Wisconsin, Baraboo

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