Chase started a relationship with Paige by giving her flowers. Then, it ended in murder.
UF students watched the result of interpersonal violence and sexual abuse in a 40-minute movie at the Reitz Union Grand Ballroom Tuesday night. About 35 students broke into groups to point out the red flags of Chase and Paige’s fictional relationship in “How to Love Better,” an event presented by UF Student Government, the One Love Foundation Facilitation and UF Strive.
The film touched on 10 signs of an abusive relationship including: intensity, jealousy, manipulation, isolation, sabotage, belittling, guilting, volatility, deflecting responsibility and betrayal, said Ryan Mills, an ambassador of UF One Love, a national organization that’s trying to end relationship abuse.
The goal of the event is to educate and prevent future relationship abuse and guide current victims who see the parallels between the program and their experiences to seek help, Mills, a 20-year-old UF history junior, said.
"Being a former victim, I know that you feel isolated — you feel alone, and like it's hard for people to understand you,” Mills said. “There's a lot of conflicting emotions and this is a conversation for not just people in relationships but friends too.”
The goal is to raise awareness that sexual violence can occur in college relationships and to reduce the misconception that sexual violence is between strangers, said James Davis, the organizer of the event.
“I think this is much more of a problem than people think or realize,” Davis, a 21-year-old UF finance junior, said.
Megan Mufson, a 22-year-old UF psychology senior, attended the event because of her interests in narcissism, psychopaths and relationships.
“It happened to me and there are a lot of parallels,” Mufson said. “But more importantly, it’s pretty interesting to understand the evils and what motivates people to act violently toward one another.”
The event was held as part of UF Sexual Assault Awareness Week and is one of six events being held throughout the week, said Nicole De Brigard, the SG leadership and service cabinet chair.
UF Sexual Assault Awareness Week has been hosted in the past, but it made a revival this year, De Brigard, a 20-year-old UF political science junior, said. A sexual assault prevention and awareness fair was hosted Monday, and a panel on consent will be held at 6:30 p.m. on Thursday in Ustler Hall.
“I am thankful that I haven’t had to experience this but I hope that everyone comes out of this week knowing that we are here for them, there are resources and they are here for you,” De Brigard said.
Thursday: Consent is Global
6:30 - 8:30 p.m. in Ustler Hall
A panel will discuss sexual assault in different communities.
Friday: The Clothesline Project
Noon - 2 p.m. on Plaza of the Americas
Survivors of sexual assault can share their stories.
Friday: Self-Defense Class
6-8 p.m. in Reitz Union Room 2335
The UF-sponsored SAFE program with University Police will hold a self-defense class in partnership with UF SG’s Sexual Assault Awareness Week.
Marie McGrath, a STRIVE lead peer educator, tells students about the fair’s T-shirts. “We had this idea for the cactus shirt, because a) succulents are so hot right now,” McGrath said. “Also, you can have prickly feelings, but that doesn’t mean you have to hurt your partner.”