Teen Dating Violence

Teen Dating Violence

Teen Dating Violence Dating and teenagers and violence… From attacks by strangers to date rape, there is a whole lot to navigate these days. ‘Interpersonal violence’ is on the rise. (That’s a fancy name for teen dating violence.) We have 24/7 access to all sorts of media, streaming, YouTube, videos, TV, and even porn. Pornography is more accessible than ever before, and often shows women who seem to enjoy being slapped around or treated in other violent, and degrading ways. The porn myth implies that women actually like to be treated violently—and even get turned—which is not true. There are Ted Talks about women who have had to train their younger lovers who grew up on recent porn that it is not okay to treat women violently, that it is a myth that they find it a turn-on. Sex and violence sell Our culture uses sex to sell sports, clothes, beer, sandwiches—even socks. We see sexual images, often paired with violence, everywhere. As one top fashion designer said to me about fashion’s advertising: “Well, everything is so fragmented now. We’d rather make a bad impression than no impression.” So the impression is that violence is okay, and even sexy. Our mainstream movies show scenes of girls getting wasted and not being able to give consent as acceptable, and even funny. We tell teens to wait, to be responsible… but we’re showing—and doing—something else. And here’s the deal. Physical violence, like hitting or slapping, is actually easier to define and recognize because it’s more cut and dried. Emotional abuse is much trickier. Whether a teen grew up in an abusive...
Celebrate Being Single

Celebrate Being Single

This is for all the single people out there I must admit, I hate those kind of radio stations…the lovey smarmy ones. I really hope I don’t come across like one of those disc jockeys. It’s especially tough if you’re single. You may already know that I talk about the tough topics that no one wants to talk about: shame, addiction, eating disorders, sexual assault, drugs, alcohol. You know, the fun stuff. Plus, I bring humor into it because I have to. Comedy helped me heal. Musical comedy helped me stay alive growing up, seriously. When I fell into stand up comedy, it helped me tremendously with my recovery on many levels. Today, in the “love” month of February, I want to talk about how our culture shames single people. That’s why I believe we should use Valentine’s Day to celebrate any kind of love: friendships, health, teachers, pets, causes, charities, communities. Valentine’s Day can be about more than just romantic love and so often the “love” that is portrayed in the media is not real. It’s made up, and pretty dysfunctional. Have you listened to love songs…to the actual words? It’s kind of funny and also frightening that as a girl growing up and singing the lyrics, I was setting myself up for a lot of therapy about my relationships with men. Celebrate Being Single So I’ve never been married and I am a straight woman. I’ve been engaged twice and I’ve been asked a few times, but, for many reasons, I’ve never actually gone down the aisle. And I cannot tell you how many people have freaked...

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