Youth are our "most precious resource and greatest hope for the future." The adolescent years of youth "present new challenges and choices for teens as they experience dating relationships for the first time and, unfortunately, associated pressures and expectations that can lead to abusive behavior." "Teen dating violence, including physical, verbal and emotional abuse, sexual assault, and harassment via texting, email or 'instant messaging' is a reality for many teenagers" and, "like drug abuse, it is a reality of which many parents and caregivers are unaware."
"Nationwide surveys examined teen dating relationships and experiences, and specific findings from these surveys include the following: 30% of teens in a dating relationship have been text-messaged 10 to 30 times an hour by a partner to find out where they are, what they are doing or who they are with, and yet 81% of parents either believe teen dating violence is not an issue or admit they don't know if it is an issue.
In one study "12.1% of high school students surveyed report they were hit, slapped or physically hurt on purpose by their boyfriend or girlfriend during the previous 12 months and 8.6% were physically forced to have sexual intercourse when they did not want to." "Studies also indicate that effects of violent relationships can be serious and put victims at higher risk for substance abuse, eating disorders, risky sexual behavior, suicide and adult re-victimization."
For those who have a teen child the Oviedo Police Department encourages you to stop by the C.O.P.S. and Volunteer Center at the Oviedo Marketplace Mall (near Dillard's) for crime prevention information on teen dating violence or review the following versions in English or Spanish: