This Valentine’s Day shop teaches warning signs of abuse — featuring verbally abusive bears and disrespectful candy hearts. The #LoveBetter pop-up shop looks like a place to buy Valentines gifts, but the items are not for sale. They’re educational and meant to help people identify subtle signs of a potentially abusive relationship.
One of these confections includes a box of chocolates that show small put downs like “I love you. But maybe you should watch your weight.”
Chief of Staff Melanie Sperling explains that the shop is “Reinventing the day as not just a superficial day, where you go on a date with your partner, buy them a gift and that’s all, but really where you take the time to reflect on your relationships.”
The shop is a new initiative by One Love, a nonprofit named after Yeardley Love, who was beaten to death by an ex. Girls and women age 16-24 experience the highest rate of intimate partner violence, and one in three women has been abused by an intimate partner. One Love is active in about 500 colleges, middle and high schools, teaching young people to look out for each other. The shop hopes that visitors stumble upon them in pursuit of presents.