Depression is a mental illness that has a significant effect on a person’s ability to function normally, and is marked by persistent feelings of sadness, emptiness, worthlessness, and hopelessness.

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Isolation can make depression feel worse and increase the risk that a person will experience suicidal thoughts or behaviors.

Helplines are available to those who feel like they need someone to talk to but may not know where to start.

However, these behaviors can become abusive and develop into more serious forms of violence.

Teen dating violence [PDF 187KB] is defined as the physical, sexual, psychological, or emotional violence within a dating relationship, including stalking. Teen dating violence (physical and sexual) among US high school students: Findings from the 2013 National Youth Risk Behavior Survey. As teens develop emotionally, they are heavily influenced by experiences in their relationships.

The Power and Control Wheel, from the Domestic Abuse Intervention Project shows patterns of abusive and violent behaviors and how they overlap.

Below are more resources and tools to help you think about whether you have a healthy or an abusive relationship: PCADV's network of programs provides a comprehensive array of life-saving services for domestic violence victims and their children in all 67 counties of the Commonwealth.

Unhealthy relationships can start early and last a lifetime.

Teens often think some behaviors, like teasing and name-calling, are a “normal” part of a relationship.

It is important to know, however, that these feelings can be treated.

Free depression hotlines can help people understand their feelings and guide them to the best mental health resources.

This website provides tools and information for people who want to represent themselves in court, or who are unable to afford an attorney and would otherwise be unable to get their day in court.