Ways to prevent dating violence

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Welcome to one of the most challenging phases of parenting—adolescence.

In all likelihood, your young teen is experiencing significant emotional, psychological and physical changes.

However, these behaviors can become abusive and develop into more serious forms of violence.

Teen dating violence [PDF 187KB] is defined as the physical, sexual, psychological, or emotional violence within a dating relationship, including stalking. Teen dating violence (physical and sexual) among US high school students: Findings from the 2013 National Youth Risk Behavior Survey. As teens develop emotionally, they are heavily influenced by experiences in their relationships.

Many teens do not report it because they are afraid to tell friends and family. Youth who experience dating violence are more likely to experience the following: Additionally, youth who are victims of dating violence in high school are at higher risk for victimization during college.

A 2017 CDC Report [PDF 4.32MB] found that approximately 7% of women and 4% of men who ever experienced rape, physical violence, or stalking by an intimate partner first experienced some form of partner violence by that partner before 18 years of age. Communicating with your partner, managing uncomfortable emotions like anger and jealousy, and treating others with respect are a few ways to keep relationships healthy and nonviolent.

The 2013 national Youth Risk Behavior Survey found approximately 10% of high school students reported physical victimization and 10% reported sexual victimization from a dating partner in the 12 months* before they were surveyed. Teens receive messages about how to behave in relationships from peers, adults in their lives, and the media. Risks of having unhealthy relationships increase for teens who: Dating violence can be prevented when teens, families, organizations, and communities work together to implement effective prevention strategies.

Victims of teen dating violence are more likely to experience symptoms of depression and anxiety.

Recognizing an Abusive Personality Identifying Abuse Leaving an Abusive Relationship Community Q&A A relationship can be abusive in many ways, but ultimately, abuse boils down to power and control.

A relationship is abusive when one partner uses any type of violence, whether it is physical, sexual, emotional, economic, or psychological, to influence or control the other partner.

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.

Additionally, during the 12 months before the survey, 1 in 10 teens reported they had been kissed, touched, or physically forced to have sexual intercourse when they did not want to at least once by someone they were dating.

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