Starting the conversation: Preventing teen dating violence - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Starting the conversation: Preventing teen dating violence

February is Teen Dating Violence Awareness & Prevention Month February is Teen Dating Violence Awareness & Prevention Month
JACKSON, MS (WLOX) - When it comes to establishing a healthy relationship, parents can set the best example. Teenagers can be very vulnerable, especially when it comes to looking for that special someone. They are faced with so may pressures to fit in, look good, and be "in a relationship." 

This month, Mississippi Attorney General Jim Hood is encouraging parents to start a conversation with their teens about what makes a healthy relationship.  That's because February is "Teen Dating Violence Awareness and Prevention Month."

According to the AG's office, one in five teenagers have experienced violence in a relationship. Both boys and girls are guilty of committing the violence, trying to control the other person by abusing them either verbally, emotionally, or sexually. Parents can help their teens understand how they should be treated in a relationship, and more importantly, how they should treat others.

The Office of the Attorney General lists the following as signs of verbal, physical or sexual abuse in a relationship:

•Calling you names, extreme jealousy, belittling you and/or threatening to hurt you, someone in your family or himself or herself, if you don't do what he or she wants
•Shoving, punching, slapping, pinching, hitting, kicking, hair pulling and/or strangling
•Unwanted touching and kissing
•Forcing you to have sex and/or do other sexual things

“We are committed to putting a stop to teen dating violence,” said Attorney General Hood. “To do so, we, as adults, must insure that teens understand what a healthy relationship looks like, are informed of the signs and risks of an abusive relationship and are provided with a non-judgmental avenue to seek help.”

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