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В жизни каждого должно быть место любви и романтике, в том числе в жизни родителей, которые воспитывают своих детей в одиночку.“Say, ‘I won’t be horrified by anything you tell me. If you feel unsafe, at risk, or uncomfortable, just call me and I will be there,’ ” suggests Lynn Zimmer, Executive Director of YWCA Peterborough, Victoria, and Haliburton, a non-profit organization that operates a secure emergency shelter for women and children fleeing any type of abuse. They want to respect their teens’ growing independence and need for privacy, but they also have to protect them — both against the risk they are facing right now and the risk that they may face over time, should the situation continue to escalate.It’s also important to offer hope, says Michael Kaufman, a writer and educator who is best known for co-founding the White Ribbon Campaign which seeks to end violence against women. “If you feel that you child’s health or safety is in danger, it’s very appropriate and important for you to get help. Speaking from the vantage point of someone who has survived dating violence, rebuilt her life, and moved on to a happier — and healthier — relationship, Jayne offers these words of wisdom to young people who are trying to decide what types of behaviours they are and aren’t willing to accept from a dating partner: “If there is a lot of concern about controlling and explosive behaviour in the start, that should be a major red flag to get out.What’s more, teenagers who are abused by their dating partners face an elevated risk of physical and mental health problems, including depression, anxiety, suicide attempts, injuries, substance abuse, disordered eating, and risky sexual behaviour.If you suspect that your child is involved in a less-than-healthy relationship, it’s important to respond with support, not judgment, stresses Kaufman: “Let them know that you’re there for them and you’re not going to blame them.” Jayne (a 24-year-old student who was involved in an abusive relationship for three-and-a-half years during her late teens), also emphasizes the importance of such an approach: “It is not the victim’s fault that they ‘let’ someone do this to them. Things are great and you’re swimming in this new love and everything is great, until one day it just sucks you under — and no matter how much you kick and struggle and gasp, you just can’t make it to the surface.”It’s very important for parents to offer solutions to teens who are feeling confused and trapped by a relationship gone wrong. Parents need to know when it’s time to listen and when it’s time to take action, he adds.Share photos and stories with others who understand what you are going through and when you meet that special someone, get together for some quality time for just the two of you.
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It can be terrifying to discover — or even to suspect — that your teenager could be involved an abusive relationship, says pediatrician Miriam Kaufman, head of the division of adolescent medicine at the Hospital for Sick Children.
“You’re worried about your kid’s physical survival and self-esteem.” Teenaged girls in abusive relationships are most likely to experience controlling behavior (35.6 per cent); put downs and name calling (37.0); pressured sex (42.9); insults (44.3); being slapped/hit (50.0); and threats (62.5), according to the Ohio University researchers, while teenaged boys are more likely to experience controlling behavior (42.1 per cent); insults (51.2); put downs (53.3); threats (55.6); and unwanted calls/text messages (60.7).
In a study released this summer, researchers from Ohio State University found that 64.7 percent of females and 61.7 percent of males reported experiencing at least one incidence of dating violence between the ages of 13 and 19, with most experiencing multiple incidences.
And a separate study of violent crimes reported to Canadian police found that dating violence represents 7 percent of all violent crimes and 28 percent of all incidents of intimate partner violence (defined by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as “physical, sexual, or psychological harm by a current or former partner or spouse”).
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