By AWARE® Teen Advisory Board Members - Will Cohen, Hadas Dubrawsky, Ellie Schwartz & Jacob Udler
February is Teen Dating Violence (TDV) Awareness Month! Most people may be focused on Valentine’s Day, but AWARE® is excited that every day in February can be dedicated to empowering young people to build healthy relationships. According to the CDC, nearly 1.5 million high school students in the United States experience physical abuse from a dating partner each year. Rooted in power and control, TDV is a pattern of behavior where a person seeks to gain and maintain power and control over their dating partner. TDV can happen to anyone regardless of gender, race, age, financial status, or sexual orientation and includes physical, emotional, technological, financial, and sexual abuse. It also can have both short- and long-term negative impacts on young people including lower grades in school, substance and alcohol abuse, higher risk of suicide, and experiencing abuse in future relationships.
To help us all raise awareness about teen dating violence, the AWARE® Teen Advisory Board created a #TDVAM social media toolkit. With fast facts, hashtags, and healthy relationship celebration opportunities, you can stay informed and share these important messages with your own network.
- Nearly 1.5 million high school students nationwide experience physical abuse from a dating partner in a single year.
- 1 in 3 adolescents in the U.S. is a victim of physical, sexual, emotional or verbal abuse from a dating partner, a figure that far exceeds rates of other types of youth violence.
- 30% of all teens report worrying about their personal physical safety in a relationship.
- 1 in 6 college women has been sexually abused in a dating relationship.
- Half of youth who have been victims of both dating violence and rape attempt suicide.
- 29% have been pressured to have sex or engage insexual activity when they did not want to.
Teen Dating Violence Awareness Month (#TDVAM) Hashtags
- Respect Week is February 12-16th! Hosted by Loveisrespect.org, this year’s theme is Hands Unite: Do Your Part. Check out their Respect Week Guide for more ideas on how to get involved to raise awareness in your local community.
- February 13th is #Orange4Love Day! Wear orange to show your support for healthy teen relationships.