MIAMI (CBSMiami) – There’s an eye-opening new report about how many teenagers experience some form of abuse in their romantic relationships.
As many as one in three suffer verbal, emotional and physical abuse. But now there’s a new form: technological abuse.
India Ortega started dating in high school. At 14 years old, she was excited to be in what she called a real relationship. He was an upper classman and he played sports.
It didn’t take long for the butterflies to fade.
“We would argue a lot, he would raise his voice at me,” Ortega said.
When she tried to break up with him, he posted nude pictures of her on social media.
“I couldn’t do anything but cry,” she said.
“How did you deal with that?” CBS News reporter Marlie Hall asked her.
“I had to go to therapy because I started going through depression and anxiety,” Ortega said.
It’s a growing type of relationship abuse among teens known as technological abuse.
Stephanie Nilva of teen violence prevention organization “Day One” says half the people ages 14 to 24 have experienced it.
“Young people are now subject to stalking, sexual harassment, disclosure of private pictures, constant texting, ‘Where are you, who are you with, where are you going?’” she said.
Ortega’s mother didn’t know what was going on for more than a year.
She helped her daughter end the relationship and pursue legal action.
“Have an open relationship. Talk to your children,” Ortega’s mother, Stephanie Cook, said. “If you feel
Now 18, Ortega is older, wiser and off to college.
“I have my days where I still have anxiety, but I have to reassure myself all of that’s done. You are moving on to bigger and better things,” she said.
And she’s sharing her story with younger teens to try to keep them out of harm’s way.