Navigating your child’s teen years can be a challenge. Some topics are simpler than others when it comes to offering advice. Dating, puberty, and driving can be major milestone events for your teenagers and no doubt they will have questions. Let’s discuss everything from your teenager’s fear of rejection to menstruation and its potential effect on seizure frequency.Read more
October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month (in fact, this month is the 30th Anniversary of Domestic Violence Awareness Month, #DVAMturns30). Domestic violence and dating violence is something that I have been thinking about quite a bit lately. I participated in an amazing photoshoot, where violence survivors and support people anonymously shared their stories (check out A Day in My Shoes exhibit at the Goodman Center, until Oct 30). An interesting study was just released that found a possible link between home stressors in preschool years (like alcoholism in parents) and being involved a violent dating relationship as a teen. Plus, the news coverage of sexual harassment and assault perpetuated by certain famous people has been pretty much nonstop over the past few weeks. Read more
One of the best parts of my job is when I get to speak to groups of teens about fun topics. Recently I talked with a group of 8th graders about healthy relationships.
What words come to mind when you think of healthy relationships? Here’s my list:
- Honesty and trust – feeling comfortable sharing your thoughts, dreams, etc. without worrying that your secrets will be shared with other people
- Equality – no one has more power in the relationship than the other
- Individuality – meaning you are able to maintain your own interests, friends, etc. without having to change them for your partner
- Acceptance of partner’s boundaries
- Safety – feeling fear in a relationship is never ok
As you might remember, February is National Teen Dating Violence Awareness Month. While you might be thinking to yourself, sure… but it’s no longer February, we’re extending this Leap Day to a Leap Week, which means that we’re right on the mark (and feel totally justified given that the temperatures here are in the single digits and there are several inches of snow on the ground). Additionally, preventing teen dating violence is incredibly important, so we’re giving it a little extra attention.
Valentine’s day evokes images of hearts, cupids, and romantic grand gestures. Along with the romance, however, it’s also a time to consider healthy communication around relationships and sexual activity, as February is National Teen Dating Violence Awareness month. Teen dating violence comes in many forms, but today we’ll focus on sexual violence and consent.