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Parents should watch for signs of teenage domestic violence

PHOENIX — Moms and dads need to be on the lookout for signs of teen domestic violence.

Among high school students who date, 21 percent of females and 10 percent of males experience physical and or sexual violence, according to the Governor’s Office of Youth, Faith and Family.

There are signs parents can look out for.

“You may see some depression, you might see some withdrawal, maybe even physical marks,” said director Debbie Moak. “You might also see the relationship as being controlling or isolating.

“Usually the other party wants to get ultimate control of an individual and literally start pulling them away from their family and from their friends and isolating them.”

Of course a healthy relationship is ideal for anybody, but for kids that might mean simply waiting.

“Delaying the dating until they’re a little bit older, a little bit more mature,” can be important for some kids in order to have healthier relationships in the future, Moak said. “But certainly parents need to be in tune to knowing their kid and monitoring any kind of changes.”

The Governor’s Youth Commission is run by teens and has several ways for kids to get help.

The state also offers several other resources for domestic violence that can be found here.

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