MEDIA CONTACTAlycia Davis, (531) 249-8079, Alycia.Davis@nebraska.gov
Lincoln – Nebraska's Division of Behavioral Health (DBH), a part of the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS), urges parents and other adults to have real and in-depth conversations with their children during Teen Dating Violence Awareness Month. DHHS is one of the providers of funds to The Nebraska Coalition to End Sexual and Domestic Violence.
“The next generation of Nebraskans are the future of our community," said Tony Green, the Interim Director of the Division of Behavioral Health. “It is vital to communicate and have real conversations with young individuals to promote safe and healthy relationships. By providing support to these individuals, teaching the importance of respecting each other's boundaries, and promoting emotional and physical safety in a relationship, Nebraska can support our youth and work towards building a safe and secure community."
The effects of dating abuse can last a lifetime. Dating abuse is described as a pattern of physically, mentally, emotionally, or sexually abusive behavior that is used to exert power and control over a partner. Victims are more likely to drop out of school, suffer from depression or anxiety, abuse drugs, have an eating disorder, or attempt suicide.
According to the Center for Disease Control's (CDC) Youth Risk Behavior Survey in 2019, approximately one in 12 high school students in the United States reported experiencing physical dating violence, and one in 12 high school students experienced sexual dating violence. This is an issue that impacts everyone including teens, as well as their parents, teachers, friends, and communities. Raising awareness about teen dating violence can help promote and provide safe, healthy relationships.
Signs to look out for that could be considered dating abuse:
If help is needed in trying to find the right words to speak to your child about dating violence, try these conversation starters:
How can you help your child?
A healthy partnership should include:
Need to talk or get immediate help in a crisis? Help is available. If you or a loved one need assistance, please reach out to: