Teen Dating Violence: The Do’s and Don’ts of Breaking Up

I’m sure many of you have seen the car insurance add on TV recently with the school dance going on in the background, right? Remember the song that was being played? It was called “Breaking Up Is Hard To Do” and it was originally sung by Neil Sedaka back in the 60’s.

Why do I mention it? Because that song title is true. Breaking up IS hard to do. Breaking up with your car insurance might be easy because someone else can do it for you these days, but when you’re breaking up with another person, someone you might have even loved at some point in time, there is no one else who can do it for you. So, knowing this, how can you make it easier? Well, the Melrose Alliance Against Violence (www.maav.org) has a list of do’s and don’ts for breaking up that you might find useful for yourself or for passing on to a friend in a tough situation.


-Explain the reason, if you can

-Be respectful


Find ways to take care of your feelings. For example:

-Keep a journal

-Talk to friends

-Exercise and/or play sports

-Listen to music

-Seek counceling

It might be easier to break up if you can agree on the following things:

-Will you still hang out together?

-Can you still call each other?

-Do BOTH of you still want to be friends? If you BOTH agree: In what ways will you both be friends? And how are you going to handle things with friends who know you both?



-Have sex one last time

-Follow the person to see who they are going out with

-Call, unless you’ve BOTH agreed this is okay

-Call the person names or spread rumors about them

-Isolate your self from friends and family

-Assume being friends means you’ll get back together

-Try to get the person pregnant

-Try to give the person an STD

Break up to:

-Scare the person to do things your way

-Get even

For more information about Teen Dating Violence and what you can do about it, check out the Melrose Alliance Against Violence website: www.maav.org.


Teen Dating Violence: Things Victims Should Know

If you are a victim of dating violence, here are four key things you should know, courtesy of the Melrose Alliance Against Violence (www.maav.org):

1.) You are NOT alone.

2.) The Abuse is NOT your fault.

3.) If it feels scary, it’s abuse.

4.) Get some help and support yourself.

Because our society glorifies violence and then often rejects its victims, it can be hard for those people, especially victims of sexual violence to come forward and seek help. Often they feel like they’re the only one suffering, when the truth is they are not alone. Many people are in a dangerous relationship, or have been in one, and don’t feel safe telling anyone.

No matter what the abuser says, it is never the fault of the victim. The abuser is always responsible for his or her actions, no matter what.

If he or she says something or does something to you, or even “for” you, that scares you, it’s abuse. Especially if it involves sexual acts.

Most people who find themselves in a bad situation don’t realize how bad it really is, whether they are the abuser or the victim. Thus, they won’t seek help. If any of the above lines ring true for you, it’s time to get help for yourself and your partner. There are many places you can go, such as your school councelor or you may call the Teen Dating Abuse Hotline at 1-866-331-9474. Their website is www.loveisrespect.org. And, of course, you can always check out the fine folks at Melrose Aliance Against Violence at www.maav.org.

Teen Dating Violence: What is Love?

There are a lot of things love is. And there are a lot of things love isn’t. But when you first meet someone who turns you all mushy inside, how do you know if it’s love or not? Here is a comparative list of what love is and what it  isn’t, courtesy of the Melrose Alliance Against Violence (www.maav.org).

Love is…

  • Responsibility
  • Hard Work
  • Pleasure
  • Commitment
  • Caring
  • Honesty
  • Sex
  • Trust
  • Communication
  • Sharing
  • Compromising
  • Closeness
  • Recognizing Differences
  • Vulnerability
  • Openness
  • Respect
  • Friendship
  • Strong Feelings

Love isn’t…

  • Jealousy
  • Possessiveness
  • Pain
  • Violence
  • Sex
  • Obsession
  • Being Selfish
  • Cruelty
  • Getting Pregnant
  • Making Someone Pregnant
  • Dependency
  • Giving Up Yourself
  • Intimidation
  • Scoring
  • Fear
  • Proving Yourself
  • Manipulation
  • Expecting All Your Needs To Be Met

Love can be so many things, but if the words in the second list match your relationship more than those in the first, no matter what your gender, it’s time to get out! Tell someone you can trust, a friend or family member that something wrong is going on, and make sure you have a safe place to go. Should you need to, call the police. They exist to help you, no matter what your situation, no matter who you are. That’s their job.

Want more info on Teen Dating Violence? Check out Melrose Alliance Against Violence at www.maav.org or check back here for more posts in the coming weeks.