Prince George's County Department of Parks and Recreation
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Did you know that one in three teen age girls in the United States are a victim of physical, emotional or verbal abuse from a dating partner? Did you also know that only 33% of teens who are in an abusive relationship ever tell anyone about the abuse? Technologies such as social media, cell phones, and the internet have made it even easier and given more access where dating violence and abuse can occur.

February has been designated throughout the United States as Teen Dating and Violence Prevention Month. The Department of Parks and Recreation hosted an event called “The Dating Game”. No, it wasn’t like a game show, but a very informative session about teen dating. Topics included recognizing dating violence, sexting, cyber violence, and how-to tips on treating young women with respect. Featured guest speakers included Judge Hermon Dawson, Prince George’s County State’s Attorney Angela Alsobrooks, and Chairman of The Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission Elizabeth Hewlett.

They were also some fun moments featuring dance groups and even a fashion show.
It was a valuable learning experience for our Debs and Beaus. Here’s what they said they learned---
 “There are multiple forms of abuse.”
 “Sharing nude pics is a crime and you can do jail time.”
 “Verbal abuse is still abuse. Just because they don’t put their hands on you don’t mean it’s not abuse.”
 “There are a lot of help out there.”
 “You should make sure that you stop any kind of abuse at the first sight of it.”
 “Don’t let anyone call you out your name or make you feel like less of a person.”