Talking With Young Adults About Dating Abuse Through Social Media

I was very honored to lead a Twit Chat this week with The National Online Resource Center on Domestic Violence (@VAWnet on Twitter). It’s so important to engage teens with the technology they feel comfortable with and are already using. I was excited to talk to fellow community managers about the unique challenges of discussing dating abuse with online channels. It’s harder with our issue. It’s incredibly difficult to have such a personal conversation (we’re asking teens to reflect on their boyfriend/girlfriend) on very public media. Not to mention, we have safety concerns that other brand managers don’t have to consider. What do you do if a young adult talks about how they’re being abused on your Facebook page? What responsibility to do we have to protect teens from themselves in terms of publicizing something that could essentially worsen their situation? What happens if their partner views that post?

It was also great to discuss what terms and tone resonate with teens online. To talk about the difference between “dating violence” versus “unhealthy relationships.” We heavily rely on pop culture to meet teens through topics they are already interested in. I hope more youth-oriented organizations to join these conversations in the hopes of using a trending topic as a learning moment for our young users.

Please check out the Storify of our Twit Chat. Major thanks again to VAWnet for hosting.

[View the story “Engaging Youth Through Social Media” on Storify]


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