Rational conversation about dating and domestic violence

Well there’s been altogether too much sensationalization about Rihanna and Chris Brown.

But are we now getting some rational thought on it instead off the victim-blaming tripe churned out by the likes of Kanye West?

Other victims of domestic and dating violence are now feeling that they need to publicly tell their stories to set the public understanding straight. These are brave women for coming forward, but they should not have to provide the public with the details of their lives because journalists are not doing their jobs of researching and understanding the dynamics of dating violence (now often called, in an oddly scientific turn of phrase, Intimate Partner Violence, or IPV) and reporting on the situation within that context.

This week was also a big one for televised conversations about IPV. Oprah and Tyra Banks both discussed it, and BET did an entire episode of 106 and Park talking about it and ways to end controlling relationships, which is good since Rihanna’s young fans are starting to line up behind the ‘it’s her fault for returning to him’ nonsense.

It’s about time, too, since teens experience dating violence too: One in four teen relationships involves violence of some sort. Here in Maine, better than half of the murders over the past 15 or more years have been IPV-related.

Are we talking to our kids about what healthy relationships do and do not look like? Are our schools? Youth are all watching at least this one relationship as it gets dragged through the mud….