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Unhealthy relationships can start early and last a lifetime.

Teens often think some behaviors, like teasing and name-calling, are a “normal” part of a relationship.

International child abductions are difficult and complex situations. Every year, hundreds of Canadian children are wrongfully taken from Canada or held in another country by abducting parents.

An international child abduction occurs when a parent, guardian or other person with lawful care of charge of a child removes that child from Canada, or retains that child outside Canada, without either the legal authority or permission of a parent who has full or joint custody rights.

Your first responsibility when you recognize abuse of any kind is to report your suspicions.

But your words and actions at the time of discovery or disclosure can be the first step toward opening the channels of communication and healing.

Regardless of your relationship to the abused child, your responses, attitudes, and actions can be critical to his or her overall experience and eventual healing.

Without attempting to investigate or intervene inappropriately, you can help.

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All too often these examples suggest that violence in a relationship is normal, but violence is never acceptable.

The definitions and indicators provided in the first part of this handbook can help you to recognize abuse when you see it.

When you do become aware of child abuse, what can you do about it?

But if the abduction has already happened, you should know: each international child abduction is unique – but at the same time shares much with others.

Taking certain steps will improve the chances you will find and recover your child.

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