Teens face domestic violence as early as middle school

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WHEELING, W.Va. (WTRF) – You’re just one call away from a way out if you’re in a relationship that could be considered unhealthy, and it’s not just adults who have this issue.

Wheeling Young Women’s Christian Associates say they know dating violence is happening in middle school, even in high school.

Advocates have seen more than 300 students go to the YWCA for individual support just last year alone.

Those advocates say there’s others out there. Those who seek help are just the ones reaching out for a way out.

About 260 teens have also gone to their group services for help.

It is scary to reach out. It is scary for adults to reach out, so I can imagine the type of fear the younger generations would have to reach out. It’s only going to get worse if you allow this type of behavior to continue into your relationship.

Patricia Flanigan, Family Violence Prevention Director, Wheeling YWCA

You have programs just one call away that could be the way out.

Even if you aren’t sure if you’re in an unhealthy relationship, advocates say they won’t turn you away.

Advocates explain all this may just start with bullying, which turns into dating violence, and eventually adult domestic violence.

The number to call for help is (800) 968-1247.

You could also go to LoveisRespect.org, which is specifically for teens.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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