After years of study, advocates have identified warning signs to educate the teenage population on what to look for and what to stay away from.
The Family Justice Center, for example, has brochures specific to the teen relationship violence experience, but Kennedy said sometimes it’s hard to get the message through.“We don’t get a lot of teens coming in.
Dating in high school can be fun and exciting, but many don’t realize teen relationships can quickly take a turn for the worse and become dangerous and, in some cases, deadly.
October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month and most think of adult abusive relationship, but teens are the most at risk, according to the Family Justice Center.“Statistically, girls ages 16 to 24 are most likely to be abused in a dating relationship,” said Beverly Kennedy, co-executive director of the center, which provides services to victims of domestic violence in Georgetown County.
For the next few minutes, her last year of life unfolded. Lauren's three-year relationship had ups and downs like any other teenage union.
There were photos at the beach and of sun-dressed summer nights, of Lauren hugging her parents at graduation, and others of her belly laughing with friends. After a rocky few months tinged with fighting and weeping, Lauren broke up with her boyfriend for good during the spring of senior year.
One of the issues, that not only the FJC faces, but nationally, is communicating with teenagers that there are signs in relationships that we know to be danger signs. It’s difficult for them to understand that those who have done the work for years know what’s going on.
Bartos recruited some of her friends who also saw a need for an organization like this.One of the keys to their success is that they are not “a once and done program”, meaning they don’t just do seminars.Bartos says that can be more harmful because “you turn up a bunch of stuff, then leave, and they (the kids) don’t know what to do.” Instead, the Bloom Crew partners with schools to do student outreach over the course of seven days, and then peer-led awareness groups twice a month, followed by small group sessions to build self esteem and communication skills for healthy relationships once a week for nine weeks. Podcast: Download Subscribe: i Tunes | Android | RSS“It’s not an anger problem.If this was an anger issue, all of us would be abusers. Bartos would later find herself at a conference where a teenage girl was the keynote speaker.South Carolina is ranked second in the nation for the highest number of women killed by men, according to a study done by the Violence Policy Center, and the state has been in the top 10 ranking for more than 15 years.“They’re not all adult women,” said Kennedy of the murder statistics.Dating violence is such a problem with young adults that February is National Teen Dating Violence Awareness Month.I felt nervous and unsure of what to say, but Mary made it easy. Even in the pothole of life called grief, she found a way to show me compassion.The lights dimmed and Lauren's mesmerizing smile jumped off the screen.“He’d say, ‘Put it on Facebook’”—so everyone would know what a great couple they were.Kaylee didn’t understand it at the time, but Jacob’s possessiveness wasn’t cute, and the relentless attention he gave her wasn’t affectionate. And unfortunately, what happened to Kaylee is not unique.