BeSmartBeWell.com addresses widespread teen dating abuse crisis with online tools.
CHICAGO, Oct. 9, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- BeSmartBeWell.com, an award-winning website, promotes health and safety through increased awareness and simple-to-use knowledge. The site's new interactive video quiz helps teens recognize abusive behavior in their or a friend's relationship.
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There is a pressing need for resources on dating abuse. One in three U.S. teens experience some form of dating abuse, according to the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health; yet two-thirds never tell anyone, according to a survey of teens. Why the silence? Sometimes victims are unsure who they should tell or how to talk about it. Sometimes they simply don't recognize the behavior as abusive.
The new video quiz helps educate teens on dating abuse. It presents five different relationship scenarios. Teens can watch the short video clips, then answer multiple choice questions about what they think is going on in the relationship.
In one, a friend overhears a teen boy belittling his girlfriend; in another, a teen girl feels pressured to fool around with her boyfriend. The quiz scenarios will help teens understand what dating abuse can look like. The answers will empower them by teaching them what to do if they encounter dating abuse.
Take the quiz Teen Dating: What's Really Going on?
Why teens sometimes don't "see" abuse
Teens may have a particularly hard time identifying abusive behavior because they don't have as much relationship experience, says Cristina Escobar, director of loveisrespect, a national organization that provides dating-abuse prevention programs and resources to teens and a collaborator on the new quiz.
"When you are young and starting your first relationship, you don't have the same background information and context that you do when you're older," she says. "Young people tend to not have as much raw data and so they might not know what's healthy and what's not."
For instance, it can be harder to recognize verbal or emotional abuse as dating abuse because the scars are not as obvious. But the reality is dating violence often starts with teasing and name calling, Escobar says. Similarly, extreme jealousy is a type of emotional abuse and a red flag for future physical abuse.
The new quiz presents short video clips of these more-nuanced abuse scenarios, and asks teens to interpret the behavior. The accompanying web text will help teens understand what healthy behavior is and what a red flag of abuse is.
Besmartbewell.com/dating-abuse provides practical information to help teens and parents identify dating abuse and escape abusive relationships. Produced in collaboration with Loveisrespect, BeSmartBeWell.com's dating abuse resources include:
At the site, visitors can also sign up for the bimonthly Spotlight Newsletter and biweekly News Alerts for more in-depth articles and breaking news on dating abuse and other important health topics.
About Be Smart. Be Well.
BeSmartBeWell.com is sponsored by Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Illinois, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Montana, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of New Mexico, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Oklahoma and Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Texas, Divisions of Health Care Service Corporation, a Mutual Legal Reserve Company, an Independent Licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association.
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