Monday, February 4, 2019

Music Mantra Monday ~ Stop Teen Dating Violence

Welcome to our Monday segment.

I frequently receive requests from specific causes asking that I add my voice. I get so many that I have had to be rather choosy, but almost all causes relating to teens and young adults I give a closer look at. This is one that touches me on a very personal level, so here's my voice.

Many times, this issue is suffered in silence. Friends of victims will see this going on long before parents do. That's understandable considering friends usually see each other for a greater part of the day. Maybe friends do try helping the victim...try expressing their concerns...but even they are only able to do so much. And the abuse and/or violence isn't always obvious at first.

There aren't always visible bruises to give a sign that something more is going on than the victim is letting on. Most bruises in these situations are internal, which are much more difficult to heal over. These relationships tear down the very essence of the person going through it until their self-esteem, self-confidence, and self-image are so low, they honestly believe they don't deserve anyone other than who has taken that all away from them.

They are lied to, lied about, manipulated and controlled on every level. Violence doesn't have to be physical to be present. Words can do a lot of damage on their own because they are internalized, exploding shrapnel targeting every ounce of good a person has and thinks they deserve. This can result in the victim turning to self-destructive behavior and maladaptive ways of coping in an attempt to silence what they feel and what they're going through. This is not only sad, it's unfair and completely unacceptable.

No one should be allowed to think they have this kind of power. That's what this month is trying to highlight. These victims need a voice...a strong support behind them giving them the courage and strength to get out of their situation. If we don't add our voices, if we turn away just that one time, it could be the one time our voice is needed the most.

Join me this month. "Huddle Up For Healthy Relationships". Learn what you can do, and how you can help. Your voice may be the one heard above all others today. Let's do everything in our power to advocate for young people facing teen dating violence.

You could help to save a life.

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