“I would say that there’s no such thing as a community where things like this don’t happen.” Unfortunately, Principal Tutwiler’s quote is frighteningly accurate.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, one out of every ten teenagers has experienced some form of dating violence.
This abuse begins early, often before the age of eighteen or in early adulthood, as more than half of women (69.5%) and men (53.6%) who have been physically or sexually abused, or stalked by a dating partner, first experienced abuse between the ages of 11-24.
Furthermore, abuse and violence within the dating relationship can have a serious detrimental impact on the victims.
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That’s why it’s so important for communities to band together at all levels—from teens to parents to educators to community advocates—to raise awareness, support one another, and actively work towards preventing relationship abuse among teenagers.
For more info on this important subject, check out these additional resources: Grunbaum JA, Kann L, Kinchen S, et al. Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance—United States, 2003.
To help keep teens safe, here are some important dating violence safety tips and facts for parents and teenagers from the Massachusetts Medical Society and Children’s Hospital Boston’s Center for Young Women’s Health.
Learn more about healthy relationships with our handouts and videos.
Teen dating violence is a serious problem affecting adolescents across the nation, and it is an issue that often goes overlooked or unrecognized.
“It can negatively influence the development of healthy sexuality, intimacy, and identity as youth grow into adulthood and can increase the risk of physical injury, poor academic performance, binge drinking, suicide attempts, unhealthy sexual behaviors, substance abuse, negative body image and self-esteem, and violence in future relationships.” However, while the statistics clearly demonstrate the severity of the problem, many people simply aren’t aware of its prevalence or its impact.
Eighty-one percent of parents believe teen dating violence is not an issue or admit they don’t know if it’s an issue.
Warning signs for parents that your teen may be a victim of dating violence Teenagers can be a moody bunch.