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Dating Violence Awareness Week is an annual event in Singapore each February 7th to 14th to draw attention to dating violence, particularly amongst younger Singaporeans aged 17 to 25, to raise awareness of dating violence and to inform youths where and how to seek help. (see also teen dating violence.)

Social workers from the Centre for Promoting Alternatives to Violence (PAVE) and undergraduates from Nanyang Technological University’s (NTU) Wee Kim Wee School of Communication and Information jointly rolled out activities during DVAW. [1]

The campaign will highlight four aspects of dating violence - emotional, psychological, physical and sexual abuse. Held in the week of Valentine’s Day, DVAW calls out to all young Singaporeans with the slogan “Choose Love, Not Abuse”, and hopes to identify elements of an abusive relationship before it is too late.

Dating violence

Dating violence happens when a partner uses force or pressure to abuse the other partner sexually, physically or psychologically in a dating relationship. The frequency and the severity of the abuse usually increase as the relationship continues.

Launch Event

A launch event will was held on 7 February 2009 at Tampines Mall, Level 4 (Open Plaza). It was graced by Guest-of-Honour (GOH), Dr. Maliki Osman, Parliamentary Secretary of the Ministry of National Development who will officially unveiled the logo of DVAW and formally introduced the Awareness Week to the public.

There were performances, exhibitions of informative posters and a jigsaw puzzle competition where the fastest couple to complete the puzzle will win attractive prizes. The puzzle conveyed educational messages about the positive and negative signs in a dating relationship.

Warning Signs

Emotional Abuse

  • You are afraid of your date
  • You are afraid of making him/her angry and are unable to even disagree with him/her.
  • He/she has publicly embarrassed and humiliated you.

Psychological Abuse

  • Your date threatens to use violence against you or against himself/herself.(e.g. "If you leave me, I will kill myself".)

Sexual Abuse

  • Your date forces you to have sex with him/her.
  • You are afraid to say 'no' to his/her demand for a sexual act from you.
  • Your date does not respect you, but is only interested in gratifying his/her sexual needs.
  • He/she does not care about the consequences of the sexual act or how you feel about it.

Physical Abuse

  • You were subjected to some physical attacks by your partner
  • Your date has held you down, pushed you, or even punched, kicked or threw things at you

Controlling behaviour

  • Your date has tried to keep you from seeing your friends
  • You are restricted from contacting your family
  • You are even forced to choose between him/her and your family and friends.
  • Your date on knowing where you are at all times and demands that you justify everything you do
  • He/she will be furious if you spoke with another man/woman
  • He/she expects you to ask permission before seeking health care for yourself
  • Your date dictates what you wear and how you appear in public

References

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