Domestic Dating—Are You A Victim?

By Jesenia Sanchez

domestic abuse1On Tuesday, November 4, 2014, Deana’s Educational Theater presented the tragic one woman play “The Yellow Dress” at Worcester StateUniversity. The program consisted of a 20 minute performance, followed by an interactive discussion with the actress.

This production was shown in honor of two women who suffered on account of domestic violence—Deana, and former graduate of WSU, Candice Scola.

This short presentation began as a passionate and promised filled love story, but proved to be quite the opposite. The main character, Anna, explained how she was in a relationship with a gentleman by the name of Rick. He showered her with attention, gifts, and care—she felt like a princess in his presence. As time progressed, red flags began to arise. One wrong gesture, and she knew she would pay.

Throughout the piece Anna is constantly debating whether or not Rick is genuine, and if she should stay with him in spite of the abuse. Ultimately, this show was about a young college student who was ignorant of her dangerous relationship until it was too late.

As the production came to a close, and the open discussion began, the one woman actress—Emma—faced the audience and asked, “How many of you think that a similar situation could happen here at Worcester State?” Sadly, every hand in the Blue Lounge was raised.

The main purpose of this presentation was to help students recognize the early warning signs of dating violence, and how to seek help.

During the interactive discussion it was shared that the root of domestic violence is not the abuse itself, but rather, the fact that one’s spouse/partner is seizing control. Anything that is
ruled as “forbidden” should be taken into account—this is a major red flag! Remember, just because there is no physical abuse in your relationship does not mean that it is healthy!

According to the Safe Horizon foundation, men and women between the ages of 20-24 are most likely to fall as victim to dating violence. It is also stated that, 1 in 4 women experience some sort of domestic violence in their lifetime.

It is because of such statistics that it is vital for every individual to be able to identify early warning signs and how to get assistance.

  • Explosive temper
  • Isolating you from family or friends
  • Constantly putting you down
  • Possessiveness
  • Telling you what to do

How to get assistance

  • Visit http://www.thehotline.org/
  • Call 24 Hour Hotline, 1 800-799-7233
  • Contact the Police, 911
  • Speak/Call a WSU Counselor, 508-929-8072

In closing, the speaker left the audience with a thought, she said, “Think about what qualities your best friend has—why are they your best friend? Now take that list, and apply it to your relationship; is it the same? Is your boyfriend, or girlfriend your friend? Are you happy? Use this as a parallel.”

Be cautious, evaluate your relationships honestly, and DO NOT be afraid to get help! Life is precious, assistance is merely a phone call away.

Unsure if you’re in an unhealthy relationship? Visit http://www.loveisrespect.org/ for more information.

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