RCASA Wednesday Outreach with Corey

In Sexual Assault Awareness on February 24, 2010 at 10:01 am

“The positive thing that has come out of my situation is that people can learn from that. I want to give as much insight as I can to young women, because I feel like I represent a voice that really isn’t heard.”

Rihanna , in her first interview since former boyfriend Chris Brown was convicted of assaulting her in February.

Unfortunately, a lot of times it takes the experience of another being publicised before teens realise theirs is not a unique situation. The incident between songstress Rihanna and her then boyfriend, songster Chris Brown brought forward a subject that tends to be overlooked. Teen domestic Violence otherwise known as dating abuse. While it is very sad that it takes an act of brutality to surface in the media, it has gotten the topic on the front page.

“Teenage girls can’t tell their parents that their boyfriend beat them up. You don’t dare let your neighbor know that you fight. It’s one of the things we [women] will hide, because it’s embarrassing.”

– Rihanna says she was too ashamed to reveal that she was being abused.

If  Rihanna , who appeared fearless and super confident in her stage life felt too embarrassed to reveal her abuse, how would the average teen feel? As adults we need to be watching for the warning signs because of this tendency to not report the abuse.

Early warning signs that your date may eventually become abusive:

  • Extreme jealousy
  • Controlling behavior
  • Quick involvement
  • Unpredictable mood swings
  • Alcohol and drug use
  • Explosive anger
  • Isolates you from friends and family
  • Uses force during an argument


  • Shows hypersensitivity
  • Believes in rigid sex roles
  • Blames others for his problems or feelings
  • Cruel to animals or children
  • Verbally abusive
  • Abused former partners
  • Threatens violence


Common clues that indicate a teenager may be experiencing dating violence:

  • Physical signs of injury
  • Truancy, dropping out of school
  • Failing grades
  • Indecision
  • Changes in mood or personality


  • Use of drugs/alcohol
  • Pregnancy
  • Emotional outburst
  • Isolation



I do have to thank Rihanna for coming forward, it was not easy for her. She did not choose to become the poster child for dating violence. However, she has graciously become a voice for the downtrodden anyway.

“When I realized that my selfish decision for love could result in some young girl getting killed, I could not be easy with that part,” she says. “I couldn’t be responsible for that. Even if Chris never hit me again, who’s to say their boyfriend won’t? Who’s to say they won’t kill these girls? I didn’t realize how much of an impact I had on these girls’ lives until that happened.”


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