Teen dating violence survivor: 'all the signs were there' - WTVM.com-Columbus, GA News Weather & Sports

Teen dating violence survivor: 'all the signs were there'

CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) -

Teens. Dating. Violence. It may not be something parents want to think is happening but it is. In fact, one in three adolescents in the United States is the victim of abuse by a dating partner and a staggering 81-percent of parents don't even know this is an issue.

Juliana Lozano, of Charlotte, was one of them. She spent four years in an abusive relationship with her ex-boyfriend, we'll call him "Joe".

"You kind of, you feel worthless," she said. "You have nowhere to run to, nobody to talk to, nobody to help you."

They began dating when she 17 and said the physical abuse started about three months into the relationship.

"It just started with little things," Lozano recalled. "Maybe pinching or pushing."

But as her relationship with "Joe" progressed -- so did the abuse. She recalls one night in particular.

"He got mad cause I took too long to get my hair done," she remembered. "So when I got to the house, he messed up my hair and he bit my forehead...and punched my head several times."

Even though she took pictures to document the abuse and often called police, Lozano never pressed charges.

"Part of me didn't want to see him hurt," she said. "I don't know. I feel like I was brainwashed."

Looking back she says the abuse began as verbal, a common starting point, experts say.

"You're fat,"she said about the name-calling. "You a fat, ugly, (expletive deleted) and nobody is ever gonna want you. All the red flags were there but I was so in love that I didn't see it. I was so blinded."

That blind love -- and abuse -- would continue right through her pregnancy until the night she says "Joe" hit her in front of their son, Jeffrey.

"I don't want him to grow up seeing this," she said. "That was like my breaking point."

Now seven months later, she's an advocate sharing her story with other teens.

"I'm proof," she said proudly. "I'm a survivor, I'm a survivor of domestic violence. I went through so much with him and still made it through."

Lozano is currently in school working toward her master's in social work. She's also a speaker withe the Love Speaks Out teen speaker's bureau and travels around Mecklenburg county talking to teens about her story, the signs of abuse and how to get out.

Copyright 2014 WBTV. All rights reserved.

  • Trending StoriesTrending StoriesMore>>

  • Thousands troll Cracker Barrel after IN woman's termination

    Thousands troll Cracker Barrel after IN woman's termination

    Thursday, March 23 2017 6:38 PM EDT2017-03-23 22:38:44 GMT
    So far, Cracker Barrel has not responded to requests for comment. (Source: Eli Christman on flickr.com)So far, Cracker Barrel has not responded to requests for comment. (Source: Eli Christman on flickr.com)

    Why did Cracker Barrel fire Brad's wife? It's really no one's business, other than Brad's and his wife's, but that hasn't stopped people around the world from demanding answers after a Harrison County, IN, man publicly asked the restaurant chain why his wife Nanette was let go from her job at the Cracker Barrel in Corydon.

    More >>

    Why did Cracker Barrel fire Brad's wife? It's really no one's business, other than Brad's and his wife's, but that hasn't stopped people around the world from demanding answers after a Harrison County, IN, man publicly asked the restaurant chain why his wife Nanette was let go from her job at the Cracker Barrel in Corydon.

    More >>
  • Mother, young daughter killed in separate accidents within hour

    Mother, young daughter killed in separate accidents within hour

    Wednesday, March 22 2017 5:31 PM EDT2017-03-22 21:31:40 GMT
    Julia Yates Patterson and Libby Patterson (Source: Facebook)Julia Yates Patterson and Libby Patterson (Source: Facebook)

    Valley Head police confirm a mother and her young daughter were killed in separate vehicle wrecks Tuesday afternoon.

    More >>

    Valley Head police confirm a mother and her young daughter were killed in separate vehicle wrecks Tuesday afternoon.

    More >>
  • Doctor says simple treatment a possible cure for sepsis

    Doctor says simple treatment a possible cure for sepsis

    Thursday, March 23 2017 7:47 PM EDT2017-03-23 23:47:51 GMT
    Thursday, March 23 2017 7:47 PM EDT2017-03-23 23:47:51 GMT
    A critical care doctor at Eastern Virginia Medical School believes he has found the cure for sepsis, a common infection that gets into the blood and kills 1,000 people a day in the U.S. alone. (Source: WAVY/CNN)A critical care doctor at Eastern Virginia Medical School believes he has found the cure for sepsis, a common infection that gets into the blood and kills 1,000 people a day in the U.S. alone. (Source: WAVY/CNN)

    A possible medical breakthrough discovered in Norfolk, VA, could save millions of lives.

    More >>

    A possible medical breakthrough discovered in Norfolk, VA, could save millions of lives.

    More >>
Powered by Frankly