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Updated: Nov 18, 2020

Recently I created an animation video for a campaign. The aim was to raise awareness for the Dating Violence issue which effects many individuals negatively. I worked with an intersectional feminist organization from Turkey called KızBaşına for the campaign. In a healthy relationship, we feel loved, supported and respected by our partners. We enjoy the time we spend with them and feel happy. There are healthy communication, boundaries, respect to privacy and personal life. Unfortunately, sometimes we end up in relationship where some of these are missing, where we feel not very comfortable, sometimes frustrated, alone, stuck. The idea of what is normal and what is not mostly shaped by the society we are surrounded by. Unfortunately so many wrong behavior are carried from past, normalized through media and placed in our relationships. It can be hard to realize we are in an unhealthy or abusive relationship. We are thought so many things at schools, however no one thought us the most necessary lesson in life. How to love yourself and how to love others.

Dating violence is physical, sexual, emotional, or verbal abuse from a romantic or sexual partner. It happens to women and men of all races and ethnicities, incomes, and education levels. It also happens across all age groups and in heterosexual and same-sex relationships.

  • Nearly 1 in 11 female and about 1 in 15 male high school students report having experienced physical dating violence

  • About 1 in 9 female and 1 in 36 male high school students report having experienced sexual dating violence

There are many signs of emotional abuse in the relationship;

-Verbal attacks and threats

-Restricting your freedom

-Demanding all of your time

-Checking your phone, email, or social media accounts without your permission. -Putting you down frequently, especially in front of others. -Isolating you from friends or family (physically, financially, or emotionally). -Extreme jealousy or insecurity. -Explosive outbursts, temper, or mood swings. -Any form of physical harm.

-Gaslighting -Possessiveness or controlling behavior. -Pressuring you or forcing you to have sex.

Being jealous, territorial and protective towards your partner has been shown and told as a romantic act through our cultures and media. Stalking, being persistent although the partner says no, having no boundaries, are all romanticized and normalized. We need to educate ourselves about unhealthy behaviors in relationships. Every relationship is different, but there is one thing in common in unhealthy and abusive relationships; The abusive partner wants to maintain power and control over the partner.

We stay in these relationships mostly because we are not aware that they are unhealthy or, for the hope that our partners will change and it will never happen again. But we need to remember they will most likely not change and these actions will only get worse. I discovered the project called Love is Respect where they have many entries about dating and relationships. There is a quiz for learning if you are in a healthy relationship or not and beneficial articles about the issue. I highly recommend you to take a look at it.

You can take the test by clicking the link below and learn more about the issue!

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