The video of Ray Rice, Baltimore Ravens player, punching his then-fiance inside a hotel elevator is difficult to watch. It is jarring, violent and presents an image that once seen, cannot be unseen.

Doubtless our children, especially the teenagers, have either seen it or have heard people talking about it at school, on the playground or at sports practice. It is critical that we make sure our parental voice is being included in that conversation to provide context and understanding of a challenging, multi-layered topic. Here are some thoughts on how to discuss it with your child.

Acknowledge It

The tape exists. It's out there. To deny it or try to diminish it to your child is to turn a blind eye to a major societal problem. Sure, it's uncomfortable to discuss with your children but it is also a teaching moment. Treat it as such.

Watch It With Them

Your children are going to see the video so make sure they see it with you. If you watch it with them, you can control the flow of information and can guide the conversation about what they see. It's important that your children feel free and safe to ask any questions they may have. Try your best to answer them honestly and in an age appropriate manner. By doing so, you will not only leave your viewpoint in their minds but, hopefully, they will feel more confident coming to you to discuss challenging topics in the future.

Domestic Violence Is Wrong

Make sure that this message gets shared and understood. It is never ok for a man to strike a woman or vice versa. This is an opportunity to discuss solving a threatening, potentially violent situation. Ask your son, how would handle a situation where you were angry at your girlfriend? Ask your daughter how she would react if she felt her boyfriend was getting violent? This isn't meant to scare them, instead it's meant to empower them and give them knowledge. You can also instruct them on dealing with a friend who is experiencing domestic abuse.

Not Role Models

Our kids idolize athletes and celebrities. Many times those athletes and celebrities fail to live up to the standards that we want our kids to aspire to. It's sad and disheartening when this happens. You can help your children understand that these people are just that — people. They are fallible and mistake-prone and their negative actions do not deserve praise.

Handling an Argument

People argue. Parents argue. Children argue. What is seen on the Ray Rice video is not only domestic violence but also two people struggling to solve their problems with words and communication. This is an opportunity for you to discuss with your children the many ways to solve problems, handle problems with a cool head and diffuse what could be a life-changing experience. For instance, teach your children to walk away from a negative situation, breathe, gather themselves and re-engage once they have calmed down. If the problem persists, get some space and stay away until you and the other person feel that you can rationally discuss the issue. Another option is to seek professional help.