Know The Facts First!
Stand up for Yourself
Are you feeling pressured to have sex?
Being in a relationship with someone means being able to talk honestly and openly, and trusting and respecting one another. Learn about healthy dating relationships. If you don't feel ready for sex, but your partner keeps trying to talk you into it, then he is not being very respectful. You can stand up for yourself and come up with a great line to use when it's happening. Here are some examples, and you don't have to be in a relationship to use them:
Comeback Lines for Fending Off Unwanted Sexual Advances
|Their Line||Your Comeback|
|"Aw c'mon, everybody does it!"||"I don't care, I'm not everybody. And besides, not everybody 'does it,' including some of the kids who say they do."|
|"If you loved me, you'd go to bed with me."||"If you loved me, you wouldn't pressure me into doing something that I'm not ready to do."|
|"If you don't have sex with me, I'll break up with you."||"If being your girlfriend means that I have to sleep with you, then I guess I don't want to be your girlfriend."|
|"Why won't you have sex with me?"||"Because I don't want to." No further explanation needed.|
|"We had sex before; why are you turning me down now?"||"I'm entitled to change my mind. It's my body and my life, and I want to wait before I have sex again."|
|"Yo, let's do it. You know you want to!"||"No. No. No! What part of 'no' don't you understand?"|
|"Your parents are out all night; let's go back to your house."||"Go back to my house? We can't. My parents won't let me have boys over when they're not home."|
|Source: American Academy of Pediatrics|
Be prepared and say it with confidence so that the other person knows you are serious.
If they just won't take no for an answer, or they get aggressive, like by holding you down or threatening you, then you can scream and run, or yell "fire" if you need someone to come to your rescue. And remember – dial 911 if you are in immediate danger.
Read more about dating violence: WomensHealth.gov - Dating Violence.
If you or someone you know is being forced to have sexual contact by a family member, visit the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network for help.
Research shows that more than 1 in 5 teens reports either psychological or physical abuse from an intimate partner. This kind of dating violence happens in the form of emotional abuse, physical violence, or forced sexual activity. Both girls and guys can suffer from, or commit, dating violence, and both can suffer serious emotional, physical, and psychological harm.
Teens in an abusive relationship may be at a higher risk of contracting STDs, including HIV, or becoming pregnant, due to a feeling of powerlessness that prevents them from insisting on safe sex or no sex at all. Understanding the types of abuse and how to recognize them is a starting point for protecting yourself from dating violence. For more information on dating violence and where to get help, see the chart below and visit GirlsHealth.gov - Safety in relationships.
|TYPE OF VIOLENCE||WHAT IT MEANS||WHAT IT CAN LOOK LIKE||EARLY WARNING SIGNS|
|Verbal Abuse||Using words to cause harm or intimidate||Name calling, Insults, Humiliating someone in public or on a social networking site, Yelling, Threats, Intimidation, Put-downs, Telling a person's secrets||Teasing that includes insults, Threatening to leave you in an unsafe location|
|Psychological and Emotional Abuse||Behavior intended to cause mental or emotional distress||Public humiliation, Repeated calls or texts, Jealousy, Possessiveness, Isolating a person from friends/family, Destroying gifts, clothing, or letters, Damaging a car, home, or other prized possessions||Pouting when you spend time with other friends, Trying to control what you do|
|Physical Abuse||Behaviors that are intended to inflict bodily harm on a person||Slapping, Hitting, Shoving, Grabbing, Hair pulling, Biting, Throwing objects at a person||Going into a rage when disappointed or frustrated, Teasing, Tripping, or pushing, Threatening to injure|
|Sexual Violence: From Coercion To Date Rape||Sexual offers that make a person feel uncomfortable; Sexual behavior that is unwanted||Insisting, physically or verbally, that a person should have sex when she does not want to, Forced sex||Using blackmail to talk you into having sex ("I will tell your mom or friends about what you did"), Making a person feel guilty ("If you loved me, you would!")|
|Unhealthy Relationship Behaviors||Behaviors that are disrespectful; These behaviors are not yet "abusive," but they can set the stage for abusive behaviors to develop; That one person in the relationship has special privileges over the other||One partner makes all decisions for the couple, One partner expects his/her partner to wait on and pamper him/her, One partner treats the other partner as if he/she were his/her property||Treating you like a possession|
Recognizing unhealthy and abusive dating behaviors and treating your dating partner with respect can help prevent violence. If you believe you or someone you know is in an abusive relationship and needs help, you need to take action before someone gets seriously hurt, emotionally or physically. You can start the help process by calling one of the national hotlines dedicated to helping teens find their way out of violent relationships.
The National Domestic Violence Hotline
The National Sexual Assault Hotline
In every school, in every community, kids are physically and emotionally bullied each day. It can occur anywhere, even online. Bullying can happen for any number of reasons, including race, religion, sexual orientation, appearance, and social status, or for no reason at all. Such relentless name calling, teasing, rumors, and insults can seriously impact a person's life, causing health, happiness, and schoolwork to suffer, but it doesn't have to be that way.
If you or anyone you know is being bullied, there are things you can do to help. Be confident, but don't retaliate physically. Most importantly, ask a trusted adult for help. Most teens will face bullying at some point, but that doesn't make it right and you don't have to suffer alone in silence. To learn more about bullying and what you can do to stop it, visit stopbullying.gov.