Resources for Youth
Youth Information — Teens Against Violence and Abuse (TAVA) What to Do, Where to Go, and What it is
Sexual Harassment, Assault, Rape — It is NEVER YOUR FAULT!
Sexual violence can happen to anyone — regardless of race, gender, age, socioeconomic status or religion. Although there is no way to prevent all sexual violence from happening, there are ways to reduce your risks of becoming a victim.
Sexual violence violates a person's trust and feeling of safety. Sexual violence occurs anytime a person is forced, coerced, and/or manipulated into any unwanted sexual activity. Sexual violence is NOT about sex — it is about power, control and harm. It is NOT motivated by sexual desire. Rapists use sex as a weapon to dominate others.
Tips if you feel you are being sexually harassed
Let the harasser know you don't like the behavior or comments.
Tell someone and keep telling until you find someone who believes you. Find supporters and talk with them about what's happening.
Do not blame yourself for sexual harassment. You certainly did not ask for it!
Keep a written record of the incidents; what happened, when, where, who else was present and how you reacted.
Reduce Your Risk for Sexual Violence
Trust your gut. If you don't feel comfortable in a situation, leave.
Be charge of your own life. Don't feel that you "owe" anyone anything sexually.
When you go out with someone new, don't feel you have to go alone.
Avoid individuals who:
Getting Help…If you or someone you know has been a victim of sexual assault, call CAFY 301-390-4092
Be assertive. Respect yourself enough not to do anything you don't want to do. Your opinions matter.
Communicate: Think about what you really want before you get into a sexual situation, and communicate clearly with your partner.
Call 911 for immediate help and call CAFY to speak to an advocate who can help at 301-390-4092 or 301-772-4273.
My Boy/Girlfriend is Years Older — Not a Problem, Right?
"Statutory Rape" is the general term for the criminal act of having sexual intercourse with a minor who is under the age of consent. Why does this law exist? The law recognizes two things about age and consent:
Children under the age of 13 are too young to understand the full meaning of sexual intercourse, and are easy for adults and older teens to manipulate.
Teenagers who are in relationships with someone who is 4 or more years older than them are not on a level playing field when it comes to making decisions about sex.
Here's the age breakdown:
Statutory Rape: Having sexual intercourse with a minor under the age of 13.
This is a 1st degree felony, punishable by up to 20 years in prison
Statutory Sexual Assault: Having sexual intercourse with a minor under the age of 16 and that person is four or more years older.
This is a 2nd degree felony, punishable by up to 10 years in prison.
So, if you're 15 or younger, and your boy/girlfriend is more than 4 years older, they could get in trouble! Here are the ages where statutory sexual assault can occur:
|Your age||Your boy/girlfriend's age|
It is a crime even if the underage person:
Agreed or initiated sex
Pretended to be older or lied about his/her age
Had sexual experience prior to the incident
It is a crime even if the older person:
Is in a committed relationship with the underage person
Thought the younger person was older
Had the approval of the younger person's parents
Love Does Not Hurt — Dating Violence
Dating violence is a pattern of forceful or controlling behavior that is used against an intimate partner without regard to that person's safety, health or human rights.
Many teens think "there's no way that can happen to me!" but dating violence does not discriminate — it occurs across all social and economic lines, all races and ethnicities, and in heterosexual and same sex relationships.
If you or someone you know is in an abusive relationship, get help NOW. Talk to a trusted adult, or contact your local victim services agency — CA FY at 301-390-4092 or the domestic violence center in Prince George’s County call Family Crisis Center 301-779-2100. You don't have to go through this alone!
How healthy is my relationship? Check out the two lists below — one of healthy relationship characteristics and one of unhealthy traits. The point of the exercise is to figure out what things in your relationship are healthy or unhealthy, so you can gain appreciation for the best things and also decide what you want to change.
The following are warning signs of an abusive person. If the person you are in a relationship with begins to exhibit any of these signs, it may be time to re-evaluate the relationship!
Everyone has basic rights in a relationship, and the responsibility to respect the other person's rights. Make sure that the person you're with is respecting you and not trying to coerce or "trick" you into anything you don't want to do!
Emotional Coercion is when one person pressures another to have sex by making them feel bad about themselves or threatening the relationship. If someone tells you…
Usually the person…
Don't be "fooled" by this power…it might seem "cool" at first, but make sure that you are getting what YOU want from the relationship!
Bullying is Real and It is Wrong
People who are get bullied get trapped. The more they get bullied, the worse they feel; and the worse they feel about themselves, the more they may be bullied.
Bullying IS HARMFUL. It can leave victims with short and long term effects.
The emotional scars from bullying can last a lifetime!
Children and Teens who are repeatedly bullied sometimes see suicide as their only escape!
The primary reason that school violence has escalated to school shootings has been because of bullying!
In the U.S., 140,000 kids stay home from school every day because they are fearful of getting bullied!
NO ONE deserves to be bullied! If you being bullied talk to someone you trust; you DON'T have to go through it alone!
Talk to someone, report it or call your local victim service provider CAFY 301-390- 4092.
Anger — I am in Control
Anger is a very normal, healthy emotion — it lets us know when something isn't quite right in our lives. However, if anger is not handled it can lead to conflict, it can produce stress, and can even lead to violence. We can't always avoid feeling angry, but we can learn to manage it without violence.