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Talking to your teen about these topics can be difficult.
The best thing you can for your teen is by modeling healthy, respectful relationships in your own life.
“This is a novel and critical part of prevention since parents and teachers, along with peers, have significant influence on the behaviors in which youth engage,” Edwards, who wasn’t involved in the study, said by email.
Starting early is key, said Emily Rothman, a public health researcher at Boston University who wasn’t involved in the study.
“This study shows that teaching young people the skills they need to engage in respectful, healthy relationships makes it less likely that they will perpetrate or be victims of dating violence,” said lead study author Phyllis Holditch Niolon of the CDC.
“These skills include conflict resolution, healthy communication, and social and emotional skills, in addition to recognizing characteristics of healthy and unhealthy relationships,” Niolon said by email.
The goal of the program, called "Dating Matters," is to give young people, their families and their communities prevention strategies to help prevent teen dating violence. Many prevention programs target older teens, and often involve high school students being lectured in health classes.
As a parent, make use this of critical time and teach teens to learn about healthy relationships. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, teen dating violence is more common than you may think.