Are you familiar with any young people who have a domestic violence background? Would you be honored to instill in them a message that discourages inflicting harm against others, especially the ones they live with? You will learn methods you can use to mentor youth who have committed domestic violence or are at risk for engaging in this behavior. You will also learn how to assist young people who have been victims of domestic violence.
One way you can assist young people who have committed or threatened violence against family members or partners and help youth who have been on the receiving end of violence is to encourage them to get counseling. You can offer to help pay for counseling sessions.
Another method you can employ to assist youth who engage in domestic violence is to attempt to reach the root of their problems. It will be easier to help them by asking what is making them angry and violent.
Use your personal experiences as a strong example to get your message across. If you attacked a family member or partner as a young person, you could say, “One time when I was young, I hit my girlfriend during an argument. I was wrong to do it and I regret it to this day.” If you were physically attacked, you can say, “I put up with my girlfriend hitting me from time to time because I did not feel worthy and she constantly apologized and told me she loved me. If your partner hits you once, it will continue to happen until your partner gets professional help or suffers the consequences.”
Teach youth who are involved in domestic violence to work toward having a powerful sense of self-esteem and worth. Explain that hitting your brother, sister or partner demeans you and does not actually make you feel good. Inform the youngsters they will not truly have a sense of worth if they inflict or accept physical or emotional blows.
Help young people learn the proper way to have a sense of power. Let them know they will only have real power if they abstain from hitting their loved ones and refuse to accept abuse.
Teach boys how to be real men. Tell them, “You are not a real man if you hit or fight a girl or lady, even if she hits you first. If she hits you, walk away. There is great honor in being a gentleman.”
Help youth learn how to control their anger. Inform them they can be locked up or experience physical retaliation if they strike someone. Encourage them to ignore petty things and find a peaceful way to resolve conflicts.
Assist youth who suffer from domestic violence in escaping their situation. Encourage them to notify the authorities when they are attacked. Try to help them find a safe shelter for victims of violence.
Heed this advice to effectively mentor youth involved in domestic violence!