One Love Helps RL Students Explore Healthy Relationships

On April 28, Roxbury Latin welcomed Claire Giampetroni, local representative of the national One Love organization, focused on educating young people about healthy and unhealthy relationships, empowering them to identify and avoid abuse and learn how to love better.

The organization was founded in honor and in memory of Yeardley Love who—three weeks shy of graduating from the University of Virginia—was beaten to death by her ex-boyfriend. The shock of learning that news will stay with her mother, Sharon, forever. Like all mothers, Sharon sometimes worried that something bad would happen to her child—an injury on the lacrosse field, for example, or a car accident. That Yeardley would get hurt by her partner had never crossed her mind. “I didn’t know then what I know now, that relationship abuse is a public health epidemic and that young women in Yeardley’s age group are at three times greater risk than any other demographic.”

Sharon Love turned her grief into action and founded One Love, which to date has educated more than 1.8 million young people through in-person workshops and more than 100 million through educational video content. In Hall, students in Class I through Class VI heard a brief introduction from Ms. Giampetroni and then broke down into smaller groups for continued discussion. Class VI and Class V joined together in the Choral Room for a session led by Ms. Giampetroni, and students in Class I through Class IV broke down into small discussion groups, led by a specially-trained student facilitator, and joined by two faculty members. Older students viewed the 15-minute film titled Amor del Bueno, which depicts two high school students over the course of what becomes an abusive relationship. After viewing the film, students reflected together about what they saw, felt, and learned. What were the signs? What could the characters’ friends have done to step in? How might these situations look and feel different from different perspectives? Was what we saw depicted on screen love? How do you know?

Finally, groups walked through together and discussed ten signs of a healthy relationship (e.g. honesty, respect, independence, trust, equality, fun), and ten signs of an unhealthy relationship (e.g. manipulation, volatility, betrayal, isolation, possessiveness).

Founded to honor the unnecessary and tragic death of Yeardley, One Love works to engage young people through compelling, relatable films and honest conversations about healthy and unhealthy relationship behaviors. We are grateful to have had Ms. Giampetroni and One Love help us to engage meaningfully in these important conversations with RL’s boys.