Teach Your Daughter About Dating Violence

Teach Your Daughter About Dating Violence

Holding HandsAlthough Valentine’s Day is all about hearts and flowers, there are times when relationships are not so rosy and may even turn abusive.  This is not something we want our daughters to face, but according to a 2008 study commissioned by Liz Claiborne and LoveisRespect.org:

  – 69 percent of all teens who had sex by age 14 said they have gone through one or more types of abuse in a relationship.

  – 40 percent of the youngest tweens, those between the ages of 11 and 12, report that their friends are victims of verbal abuse in relationships, and nearly one-in-ten (9 percent) say their friends have had sex.

Clearly our daughters need to learn how to manage themselves in relationships, from establishing boundaries, to learning how to say ‘no’, to knowing who to talk to if she feels in danger.  The best teaching tool we can use is modeling appropriate relationships in our own lives whether that be with our partner, family or co- workers, and especially with the interactions we have with our children.  Also, the media is filled with examples of couples acting appropriately and inappropriately.  Discuss these examples with your daughter and whether or not they fit in with your relationship values.

And then educate your daughter about dating violence.  LoveisRespect.org has excellent information on dating basics, what is and is not healthy in a relationship, and what to do if she needs help.