As discussed through various forms of media including: TV, radio, and in print, on Monday, the body of Lauren Astely was found in a marsh in Wayland. The next day police arrested 18-year-old Nathaniel Fujita, her former boyfriend, on murder charges. According to the National Council on Crime and Delinquency, one in three adolescent girls is a victim of physical, emotional, or verbal abuse from a dating partner. Other studies have suggested that the rates are even higher. This case prompted a no-nonsense discussion of teen violence on The Doug Meehan Show.
If you missed this live interview and wish to listen this informative 40 minute interview where I offer my direct opinions and insights as well as answer each of Doug’s and the listeners significant questions, the podcast is available for listening on demand. In addition, I provided a safety plan for display on 96.9 Boston Talks: The Doug Meehan Show’s blog. Certainly comments on Doug’s blog site to share your thoughts about the safety plan documented and/or the interview are welcome. You can also find this safety plan as written below:
By: Dr. Karen Ruskin, PsyD, LMFT
Everyone has relationship choices. Remind yourself that you are valuable and deserve to be treated with respect. If your relationship feels in any way uncomfortable, or frightening, trust your feelings and get out of it. If someone hurts you physically or makes you feel scared or bad in any way emotionally, it is imperative that you tell someone you trust and talk about what is happening.
Take Steps to Help Keep Yourself Safe
1. If you think you are in an abusive relationship get help IMMEDIATELY!
2. Share your concerns with someone you trust, do not isolate yourself and keep your worries to yourself. Speak with a friend, parent, teacher, doctor, guidance counselor, therapist.
3. Develop a safety plan. Specifically plan in advance where you will go, who you will call, and how you will escape if you feel you are in danger of violence. Be sure to memorize the phone numbers and location of where you will go.
4. When you go out somewhere tell someone where you are going and when you will return.
5. Keep with you a form of immediate access to communication (e.g., calling card, cell phone).
6. Blocking your phone from receiving incoming calls from the abuser’s number is a great step, but not enough as that person may call you from a different number. Therefore, if you feel you are in an abusive relationship and you no longer want to be contacted by this person, change your phone number and ask your friends not to give it out. Also, have your phone block incoming calls from the abuser’s number.
7. Consider getting a restraining order.
National Domestic Violence Hotline: 800-799-7233
The Doug Meehan Show is on 96.9 Boston Talks weekdays 2-6pm Monday through Friday.