At loveisrespect, we talk to a lot of teens and young people who are struggling with relationship issues. They might be going through a breakup, wondering if they should stay with their partner, or they might be experiencing abuse. Our advocates are often asked for specific advice, or what they would do in the same situation. It’s totally understandable to want to be told exactly what to do or how to handle a situation, but at loveisrespect, we’re very intentional about not doing that. Here are a few reasons why:
Each situation is different. Everyone who reaches out to loveisrespect has a different experience. Although many people’s experiences may be similar, no two stories are exactly the same. What might work for one person may not work for someone else. Therefore, loveisrespect advocates try to provide options and support based on an individual person’s needs in that moment. It’s up to the person in the situation to make the choice that is best for them.
Which brings us to…
You know your situation better than anyone. There are many different factors that go into making decisions about relationships. Although a loveisrespect advocate may ask for some details about a person’s situation so they can provide support and connect to resources, the person in that situation knows their personal story best. Someone could be contacting loveisrespect on their own behalf, or on behalf of a friend or someone else close to them. When discussing possible options, we know that the caller/chatter knows best what might work and what just won’t. We know that they are the best person to decide what is right and safest for them at that point.
Which is why…
Our mission is to empower young people affected by dating abuse. Abuse is about power and control. If someone is contacting loveisrespect because they are in an unhealthy or abusive relationship, they may feel as though they are not in control of what is happening in their relationship. Loveisrespect advocates are dedicated to empowering the people who contact us to take steps toward safer, healthier lives. That’s why we focus on providing unbiased information about healthy relationships and abuse while helping people brainstorm options. That is also why we don’t share personal opinions or give advice on what we might personally do. We’re here to empower others to make the best and safest decisions for themselves, not to take that right or power away from them.
Do you need to talk through what’s going on in your relationship? We’re here 24/7! Call 1-866-331-9474, chat here on our website or text “loveis” to 22522.