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Teenage abusive relationship(7 Posts)
I've posted this in the Staffroom too, but I hoped to catch the eye of our wise posters on this board. It's a situation that's truly worrying me.
Yesterday, at work (teacher) I stumbled across a situation that I'm not sure how to proceed with. I saw a Year 11 girl goading her boyfriend and him retaliating, calling her c*nt, sl*g, tw*t. Staff intervened, one teacher ushered the girl to her lesson and I stayed with the boy to calm him down. He has a history of violent outbursts (punched windows, doors etc). I talked him down and in temper, he started sobbing.
He told me that she goads him, gives him mixed messages, is equally verbally abusive. He is convinced that she wants him to hit her - has said to him many times "go on then, hit me. You know you want to". Whilst verbally abusive, he hasn't hit her, but I'm seeing that the red flags are there for a violent relationship. Indeed, whilst I sat there with him, she left her class and was walking back and forth, as if goading him more.
I tried to tell him that at his age, life should be about exam-stresses, playing footie/rugby with his mates, fancying girls and enjoying life. Instead, he's hating school, getting into trouble and wrecking his head about this girl. He told me "but I love her Miss, she's under my skin." His Head of Year then took him to his office to cool him down. This cycle will just continue until it escalates to the next level.
What can I do? His parents are not good role-models, and her parents indulge her completely and are very anti-school. I want to be able to talk this boy into moving on with his young life (he trusts me). I want to to tell this girl to grow up and stop goading him, to stop playing dangerous games with a troubled boy.
Other staff have seen her toy with him too - all over him one minute, pushing him away the next, ignoring him for days on end etc. It's truly a toxic situation but I have serious concerns about this boy. I see the potential for a violent relationship here and I'm hating myself for saying this, but this girl seems to be playing a game with him without realizing the awful life-changing consequences.
Please advise. Has anyone come across something like this before? Is there any more I can do?
I saw a Year 11 girl goading her boyfriend what exactly did you see?
He told me that she goads him That's unfortunately his word against hers.
He is convinced that she wants him to hit her I hope you told him he was wrong?
Other staff have seen her toy with him too - all over him one minute, pushing him away the next, ignoring him for days on end etc.
What sort of staff are watching that closely that they can see all this detail about one couple's relationship in a large school?
All you describe is a snapshot and hearsay. What do you think you should do?
The problem isn't her goading, it's his inability to manage his anger.
People will goad him all his life, and he needs to know how to respond appropriately.
You won't be around to tell future girlfriends, work colleagues or randoms in the pub to leave him alone and stop winding him up.
Please don't give him any indication whatsoever that this is her fault in any way.
Yes she sounds like a silly drama-loving sixteen year old, they're not that uncommon.
In terms of their relationship I'm not sure what you can do. No teen ever ended a relationship because an adult told them to.
This is a difficult one.
Regardless of what she is doing he needs to learn to not react. Not to make the relationship better. But for himself.
Surely this is a safe guarding issue though?
It's sounds like you see it as an abusive relationship from both sides. Surely there is someone you can go to regarding safe guarding for them both.
I've done the MN thing and reversed the sexes. (I'm assuming all that you say is accurate - not doubting you but some of it is obviously second hand) Answer is still the same. They are both bringing out the worst in each other, and will probably continue to behave appallingly.
I'm not sure how you can get them to behave better, or break up, though. Does the school have a counsellor?
You do what any teacher in the land should do, report your concerns in writing to the relevant member of staff with responsibility for dealing with pastoral issues eg head of year/pastoral leader.
Unless you are the form tutor or school counsellor yourself it is not up to you to advise or counsel. If you teach them you can keep an eye on the situation and if you come across them again in that situation you do your best to calm things down at the time then refer.
The pastoral person is best placed to know what to do eg they will probably have dealt with these pupils many times over the years, know the families, they can organise counselling or involve other agencies who might be able to help.
This is helpful beyond belief. Thank you all.
Dashing out now and I won't be able to reply until I get home. I've already emailed Child Protection with my concerns.
I'll answer the questions I've been asked later.
But yes, I told him on no uncertain terms that he needs to sort out his anger and that he'll go through life meeting people that push his buttons.
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