We use technology daily to connect with friends and family, post photos and videos, or even to find out more information about health issues, current events or what’s happening in our community. Increasingly, teens are reporting that violence and abuse from current and ex dating partners is happening through text messages, social media and the distribution of nude or semi-nude images without consent. This is called “digital dating violence.”
You may not know that digital dating violence is happening to you or to someone you know. Actually it’s OK that you don’t know, but it is NOT OK that it’s happening. This toolkit includes resources from various credible sources from organizations helping teens identify if digital dating violence is happening to them and provides information, tips and ideas for what to do and what kind of help is available.
This section provides helpful information to teens about the most common forms of digital dating violence including: harassment; threats; location tracking; texting and sexting; distribution of nude or semi-nude photos; online luring and sexual exploitation and resources that can help.
Texting and sexting
Distribution of Nude or Semi Nude Photos
Online Luring and Sexual Exploitation
No matter what you’re experiencing in your relationships, we want you to be able to continue to use technology in the safest way possible. Here are some resources to help you navigate online spaces.
Often, the most dangerous time for someone is when they are planning on leaving a violent relationship. The resources in this section provide teens with information to strategically use technology in ways that can enhance their safety by creating a safety plan. A safety plan can not only help you strategically think through the steps needed to leave your relationship but also help to take back some control if you are being stalked, monitored, or abused through a perpetrator’s misuse of technology.
The information sheets provided here are designed to help better understand the legal information about your experiences of Teen Digital Dating Violence. The resources here provide general legal information. Legal advice or representation must come from a lawyer who can advise you whether you should do something in a lawsuit or whether you should take certain actions in a court matter.
You are Not Alone. If you or someone you know is experiencing any type of violence in your relationship, there are many people who can help. You may be feeling a variety of different emotions from sadness, anger, shame, embarrassment, or fear about getting in trouble but know you are not alone. Finding support early on will very likely result in you feeling less alone. Reach out to a friend, family or a safe adult. A safe adult can be a teacher, a coach or even parents of a good friend.
Here are some organizations where you can seek support:
This section provides additional resources that may be helpful for teen’s experiences of Digital Dating Violence.