Grace Smith House Announces Results of Healthy Relationship Campaign for Teens

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The Grace Smith House, a private not-for-profit domestic violence agency which provides both residential and non-residential services to victims of domestic violence and their children, announced the results of a social media campaign which teaches teens about healthy relationships.

www.teendatingquiz.com
These insights straight from the youths we serve are a tremendous value for us and show that we have a lot of work to do as a society, community and as individuals.

The Grace Smith House, a private not-for-profit domestic violence agency which provides both residential and non-residential services to victims of domestic violence and their children, announced the results of a social media campaign which teaches teens about healthy relationships (http://www.teendatingquiz.com).

Grace Smith House worked with a focus group of area teens at Children’s Media Project to create the campaign, which consists of student produced PSAs, cinema advertising, high school football field advertising and Facebook advertising that all leads to http://www.teendatingquiz.com.

The campaign reached more than 30,000 teens in Dutchess County and the surrounding areas resulting in more than 1,000 completed surveys.

“One goal of the campaign was to make sure we were resonating with both male and female teenagers,” said Himali Gandhi, Youth Education Outreach Coordinator, Grace Smith House. “We are happy to report that of those we reached 44% were male and 56% female.”

Grace Smith House will use the data generated from the quiz to identify gaps in knowledge and tailor educational programming accordingly.

The results identified some areas of concern regarding communication and control, aggression, and sexual activity:

When asked, “How often do you and your boyfriend/girlfriend talk or text?” 42% responded “We talk and text from the time we get up to the time we go to bed, while 14% responded “I have to answer his/her calls and texts right away or he/she gets angry or scared.” 43% responded, “We talk and text when we both have time.”

When asked, “How has your social life changed since you started this relationship?” 35% responded “My boyfriend/girlfriend gets jealous when I hang out with friends of the opposite gender,” while 10% responded, “I’m not allowed to have friends of the opposite gender.” 55% responded, “My boyfriend/girlfriend respects my other relationships.”

When asked, “What does your boyfriend/girlfriend do when he/she is angry with something you have said?” 29% responded “Damage property, yell and swear at you or give you the silent treatment, while 6% said “Hit or push you or someone else.” 66% responded “Talk to me directly, or ask a friend or mentor for advice.”

When asked, “Does your boyfriend/girlfriend expect you to hook up whenever he/she wants? 23% responded “sometimes my boyfriend/girlfriend begs me and I feel bad so I say yes, while 7% responded “I have to because if I don’t he/she will dump me.” 70% responded, “We only hook up when we both want to.”

“These insights straight from the youths we serve are a tremendous value for us and show that we have a lot of work to do as a society, community and as individuals,” Gandhi said, while offering the following advice: “For adults – talk to the teens in your life. Whether it be your child, sibling, or student – have a conversation about healthy respectful relationships. Talk to both female and male teens, because we all equally need this education. And for teens: Respect is not a privilege in a relationship, but a necessity.”

If you or someone you know needs help, call the Grace Smith House, free 24/7 hotline: 1-845-471-3033.

About Grace Smith House

Grace Smith House, Inc. is a private not-for-profit domestic violence agency, which provides both residential and non-residential services to victims of domestic violence and their children. Its mission is to enable individuals and families to live free from domestic violence through providing shelter and apartments, advocacy, counselling and education; raising the consciousness of the community regarding the extent, type and seriousness of domestic violence and initiating and taking positions on public policies in order to provide options which empower victims of domestic violence. Besides providing a safe place, where the victims can start their healing process and work towards leading lives free from violence, the agency’s mission is to educate the community about the extent, type and seriousness of domestic violence and to initiate a public policy in order to provide options that empower victims of domestic violence. For more information, please visit http://www.gracesmithhouse.org/.

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Jessica Lyon
Co-Communications, Inc.
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