Talking with Teens: A Conversation on Control

Happy Teen Dating Violence Awareness Month (TDVAM)! PADV is providing our community with incredible content, new resources, and important conversations to commemorate Teen Dating Violence Awareness Month. Our goal at PADV is to make the dating violence statistic change from one in three to none in three.

We are proud to resume our monthly Microlesson series! The Microlesson Toolkit is a series of lesson plans designed to help individuals have guided conversations on topics critical to dating violence prevention and healthy relationships. This month we are proud to release “CONTROL”- a guided lesson plan to help young people learn the difference between power and control, and why we do not want to see control in dating relationships.

Statistically, teens are most likely to go to a peer or friend in cases of dating violence, and studies have shown that 80% of parents do not even identify teen dating violence as a problem. The Microlessons Toolkit aims to help adults have these conversations with teens without the awkwardness.

Some PADV pieces of advice for these conversations:

  1. Definitions: It may help to take a step back and ask young people what they think words like “power” and “control” mean, and why they think that.
  2. Conversational Guidelines: Teens may be hesitant to be open because they fear being judged, minimized, or getting in trouble for what they share. It’s important to realize that your young person has a whole conception of the world around them, and it is a reality you may not know or have not grown up with. Setting guidelines to pause, recenter, and respect boundaries in these types of conversations can be helpful in getting your young person to open up.
  3. It is Okay to Not Know: Your teen may ask you a question that you may not know the answer to. No worries, your human! Be honest when you need to find an answer and give your young person a day/time you’ll get back to them. Sources for help include: Partnership Against Domestic Violence, teachers, school social workers or guidance counselors, and reputable websites such as breakthecycle.org, loveisrespect.org, and knowyourix.org.

For more information, please rewatch our Facebook Live event from Thursday, February 4th entitled “Talking with Teens”. This virtual event is a fireside chat between proud parent and VP of Development and Marketing Jeffery Brown, proud parent and VP of Prevention & Outreach Melissa Arthur.