My budding romance depended on whether I heard the shrill ring of an old-fashioned land-line phone. The social lives of today’s teens don’t revolve around waiting for their phones to ring.Teens are much more likely to connect with each other through some form of social media, whether it’s Twitter, Instagram or matchmaking apps such as Tinder and Hot Or Not.Teen dating violence is an all too real reality for those that live it.Statistics show that 1 in 3 teens have been in an abusive relationship.Our trained peer advocates are available 24/7/365 to offer education, support and advocacy to teens and young adults, as well as their concerned friends and family members, who have questions or concerns about their dating relationships.We also provide information about dating abuse to service providers, counselors, teachers and members of law enforcement.If you have a teen with good self esteem and that you can talk to you are probably in a better spot to help them.Keep open lines of communication and if necessary use a parent contract to clarify your specific rules about dating.
Chat with a peer advocate by clicking on the “Chat Online Now” button at the top of the page. If you can’t or don’t want to talk to an advocate on the phone, we offer the same support via our live chat service on She says that teens she knows often meet online by contacting each other through Facebook and by commenting on each other’s Twitter feeds and Instagram photos. If that person “likes” you back, it’s time for a digital chat.Or they play around on Tinder, that popular matchmaking app that allows users to find potential matches based on their proximity to each other, a couple photos and their common interests. “If you want to talk to someone, but you’re too embarrassed to do it in real life, it’s easy to do it over the Internet instead of face to face,” she says.Peer advocates can connect you to resources in your area, provide you with helpful websites, help you create a plan to stay safe or just listen to your concerns.All conversations with peer advocates via phone, chat or text are free and confidential.It’s important to make sure teens understand that they should never provide personal information to strangers, such as where they go to school, and never agree to meet someone in person without bringing along a responsible adult.Claire Mc Carthy, an assistant professor of pediatrics at Harvard Medical School, said it best in a Huffington Post blog on teen online dating.But, really, what can we expect from a dating app that focuses on appearance?Another troubling aspect: Sometimes, these teen relationships take place entirely online—the couple might go out for months and then break up without ever actually meeting in person. How are we parents to know who our kids are connecting with online?When they’re online, teens have the freedom to be whoever they want, which may be a good thing for a shy kid who just doesn’t feel comfortable talking directly to people. One mom I know was distressed to discover that her daughter had created multiple personalities on Tumblr, including one that seemed to invite followers of her blog to send inappropriate photos to her.Some of the girls quoted in the high school newspaper story said they got fed up with using Tinder when boys immediately requested that they send nude photos.