One out of every four teens has been verbally, physically, emotionally, or sexually abused by the person they're dating, according to the CDC. Finally, never get so wrapped up in another person that you forget who you are.
ANY TIME someone you're dating demeans you, forces you to do something you don't want to do, or hits you -- get out of that relationship. By dressing sexy to impress your date or acting in a way that makes you feel uncomfortable, you lose your sense of self.
Girls who've set their sights on older guys, beware.
Dating a guy who's in high school when you're still in middle school, or who's a senior when you're still a freshman might seem cool, but it could get you into a lot of trouble.
Whatever the reason, your parents might not want you to go out with anyone until you reach a certain age.
Depending on how easygoing or strict your parents are, that age could be as young as 13 or 14, or as old as 18.
She's also written a book about sexuality for teens, called Sexual Decisions: The Ultimate Teen Guide.
One very important question you need to ask yourself is whether this person is safe for you to date.
Before you ask out the object of your affection, or say, "yes" to someone who's interested in you, go through this checklist of questions to make sure you're ready to handle whatever might happen in your new relationship.
About half of 15- and 16-year-olds say they've dated, but just because you've reached a certain age doesn't really mean you're ready to date.
Tell your parents all the reasons why you like this person and want to go out with them -- because they're kind, smart, and fun to be around ("because they're hot" isn't a legitimate reason, so don't even try it).
See if you can work out a deal where you ease into dating gradually.