Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Texting while Dating

Texting is often the preferred method of communication in a relationship. If you’re just getting to know someone, it’s low-key and doesn’t involve the pressure that can come with talking face-to-face. If you’re already friends but just are now getting to know them in a romantic way, texting can help ease the transition from friendship to relationship. And even though relationships cannot be built solely on texting, they’re often a great way to stay in touch with your partner and deepen your bond.
Nothing can replace face-to-face conversation, but knowing how to text in a relationship means you’ll be able to communicate effectively and show your special someone the respect they deserve, from one phone to another.

Texting While You’re Dating

If you are still in the early stages of a relationship, texting can be a fun way to share more of yourselves, whether that’s pictures of your cat or more intimate thoughts and feelings.
The thing is, when you hit the send button, you’ve lost control over who sees that message. Once you sext or send an inappropriate photo, for example, you’re losing control over who may actually see that photo -- say, your partner’s best friends, sports team members, classmates, parents, teachers -- you name it, someone else can eventually see it, whether by your partner’s choice or not.
Early on, you’ll want to talk about setting boundaries. This extends to digital boundaries about what you’re comfortable sending via text. It’s important to communicate openly and honestly about what you’re ok sending and let your partner know what you are comfortable sharing over text.
Partners who are abusive may ask for a photo or more, or may coerce and manipulate you into giving them what they want. Saying things like “if you really loved me” or “you must not trust me” is more subtle and manipulative than just “send me a photo now” -- be wary of anyone who doesn’t respect the boundaries you’ve set up. Furthermore, be respectful of your partner’s boundaries. If they don’t feel comfortable sending you something, it doesn’t mean they don’t trust you. It just means that, for them, this is a line they are not willing to cross.

Texting In a Committed Relationship

When you’re in a committed relationship, texting can be a way to quickly talk to each other about your day, make plans for the weekend or share photos and video. Unfortunately, it also has the potential to become another avenue for abuse.
If you text your partner to see what they’re up to and they don’t answer right away, give them a chance to respond. There are a ton of reasons they may not be responding right away. Maybe their phone has been confiscated by teachers or parents. Maybe it’s lost or stolen, or their phone is in an area with terrible reception and they can’t receive your texts.
Avoid texting constantly asking for an answer -- not only is it very annoying, it can border on downright unhealthy. Demanding to know why your partner isn’t answering your texts is aggressive and controlling. And if your partner is texting 20, 30 or hundreds of messages at once demanding to know your whereabouts, that’s definitely a warning sign for unhealthy or even abusive behavior.
Part of healthy communication is being aware of what you say and how that could be interpreted. Maybe what you thought was a playful joke actually hurt their feelings. Spending time together in person lets you explain yourself, as well as pick up on body language and facial cues. So if you want to talk about more serious matters or grow your relationship, save your talks for in-person. Pick a good time when they’re not busy or stressed and avoid attacking them if you feel something is wrong. Make eye contact and speak directly, making sure you know you’re listening to what your partner is saying.
Do you feel like your partner is suffocating you because they text constantly? Are you feeling threatened or like they have control over your life via text? Do they text you fun and sweet messages or are those texts also often berating, yelling, manipulating or making you feel anxious and fearful? If so, it’s possible that your relationship is unhealthy or abusive.
You have the right to be in a safe and healthy relationship free from all types of abuse. Learn about digital abuse, then help spread the message of healthy teen relationship during Teen Dating Violence Awareness and Prevention Month by reading the National Respect Announcement at your school, youth group or wherever you see fit.
*This article was reposted from

Friday, January 24, 2014

Are you a gamer?

Check this out!  Since 2008, Jennifer Ann's Group has sponsored the Life. Love. Game Design Challenge to challenge video game designers and developers to create video games about teen dating violence. Here are the winners from 2013!

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

One in Three

Dating Abuse does not discriminate!  Speak up! Get help!

Monday, April 15, 2013

In an unsafe relationship and thinking about getting out?  Use Love is Respect's online Safety Planning Tool to stay safe!

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Have you seen the two part mini-movie about dating violence?  Watch it on YouTube today!

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Olympic Gymnast Jordyn Wieber Talks Healthy Dating

*re-posted from
Jordyn Wieber says great relationships and gymnastics both need one thing — balance.
She should know. Jordyn is an Olympic gold medalist and the reigning national women’s gymnastics champion. Today, she’s sharing her insight into healthy dating with teens at the Green Dot Ánimo Oscar De La Hoya High School. This special visit is a part of Mary Kay’s“Don’t Look Away” campaign to prevent and end domestic violence.
Jordyn decided to support Mary Kay’s “Don’t Look Away” campaign and loveisrespect because of the alarmingly high rates of dating abuse.
“After learning about the warning signs and shocking statistics of teen dating abuse, it is clear this kind of program is needed,” she said.
For Jordyn, the issue of dating abuse is personal. “The thought of my family, friends, teammates or fans becoming part of these statistics terrifies me. That alone motivates me to share the warning signs and the text-for-help program with as many people as possible.”
Jordyn plans on sharing what she’s learned on and off the beams about teamwork and good communication. She said it wasn’t hard to see the similarities between her favorite sport and building a healthy, respectful relationship.
“Just like gymnastics, balance and boundaries are key to healthy dating relationships,” said Jordyn.

Friday, September 21, 2012

Where to get help

Ever wonder where you can get help or more information about unhealthy relationships? Here are a few important links to check out!
Features a live chat and relationship quizzes to help you identify if you are in danger.
Get the 411 on what dating violence is and find out how you can get a restraining order.
Send anonymous call out cards to let someone know they're not being cool, play fun games and create your own avatar.
Your one stop shop about digital dating violence and bullying. It's an MTV Campaign, so you know it's awesome!
The NW Network offers Bisexual, Trans, Lesbian and Gay specific support and resources.
Another great resource for LGBT teens. Take quizzes, get the facts and know your rights!
Are you a strong man? This is the place for you to find information and spread the word that your strength is not for hurting! Send postcards and get resources.