Teen Dating/Violence & Anger

  •  What is teen dating violence?

    • Teen dating violence is a pattern of destructive behaviors used to exert power and control over a dating partner. Dating violence occurs when a person in a current or past dating relationship uses physical, sexual, verbal, or emotional abuse to harm, threaten, intimidate, or control the other person in the relationship

      Signs of abuse

      • Checking your cell phone or email without permission
      • Constantly putting you down
      • Extreme jealousy or insecurity
      • Explosive temper
      • Isolating you from family or friends
      • Making false accusations
      • Mood swings
      • Physically hurting you in any way
      • Possessiveness
      • Telling you what to do

      How to help:

      • Believe your friend’s story
      • Make sure they are safe
      • Let them know they don’t deserve to be abused
      • Ask them lots of questions to get them to think about the problem.
      • Ask them what their options are and what they can do. (Stay, leave, talk to partner, get advice)
      • Let them know that abuse almost always gets worse in a relationship if ignored.  If the abuse is to stop, the person being abused has to be willing to take actions to end it.
      • Encourage them to get help

      Community Resources:

      • Call 911 in an emergency
      • Counselors, Nurses or other school personnel
      • Women in Need – (972) 772-3000
      • National Teen Dating Hotline – 1-800-799-7233


    What is Anger?

    Anger is a natural feeling for both children and adults. It is the way our bodies react to stress. It is very important to learn strategies to help control anger so that it does not cross over to violence.

    Children and Anger:
    Both parents and teachers should allow children to be angry. When anger is in control, a child is able to communicate his or her feelings in a calm manner. This is a healthy way to deal with anger. If a child is not able to express anger and it is held in, this could be unhealthy for the child and lead to violence or tantrums. Here are some behaviors your child may child may be demonstrating:

    • Over react to simple requests
    • Changed moods over period of time
    • Drop in school grades
    • Social withdrawal/loss of friends
    • Provokes fights with others
    • Blames other person instead of taking responsibility
    • Loss of interest in physical appearance

    Risk Factors Associated with Anger:

    • Learning problems in school
    • Family problems
    • Difficulty making and keeping friends

    Tips for dealing with Anger:

    1. Help children to name their feelings and talk about what exactly is angering them. Help to make a plan to solve the problem.
    2. Provide a “cooling off” spot. Children can benefit from having a pre-arranged area to go so they feel safe when they are angry. Time alone can help them sort their thoughts.
    3. Allow children who are capable to draw or write about what’s bothering them. This activity can help children find the words to express their anger.
    4. When the anger has passed, discuss the situation. Create a plan to help the child have tools to use the next time they are angry.
    5. Be supportive. Remind children that anger is healthy, and that with practice and a plan they can stay in control.