Everyone deserves a relationship that they can put trust into and receive it back, along with love, devotion, and respect. However, although two people typically begin a relationship based upon these factors, it doesn’t mean that everyone is willing or able to maintain a healthy relationship. When relationships include excessive aggression, blame, and mistrust, one or both of the partners can begin to show violence towards one another, whether it be emotional or physical. Dating violence, also known as intimate partner violence, is an epidemic that is defined by “a pattern of assaultive and controlling behaviors that one person uses against another in order to gain or maintain power and control in the relationship. The abuser intentionally behaves in a way that causes fear, degradation and humiliation to control the other person,” (“Michigan Domestic and Sexual Violence Prevention & Treatment Board,” 2016). Dating violence affects people from all ages, genders, cultures, backgrounds and identities (“Break the Silence,” 2016). As many as 1 in 3 high school students experience physical, sexual or both types of violence from their partner and of this population, young women between the ages of 18 and 24 experience the highest rate of violence. This number is almost double the national average (Dating Abuse Statistics, 2016). In addition, LGBTQ youth are even more likely to experience dating violence, sexual coercion and/or cyber dating abuse than their heterosexual peers (Dating Abuse Statistics, 2016). Dating violence has gotten so prevalent that it’s become a public health crisis and this cycle needs to be broken. Below we have provided a list of warning signs and the typical behavior of an abuser. If you or someone you know is in an abusive relationship and are in need of help, please call the National Domestic Abuse Hotline at 1-800-799-SAFE (7233) or Love is Respect Hotline at 1-866-331-9474. Love is Respect is a project of the National Domestic Abuse Hotline and both places have 24/7 advocates waiting to help you. If you are at risk, please be sure to make sure that you are in a safe place before calling.
About Dating Violence. (n.d.). Retrieved April 17, 2016, from https://www.michigan.gov/datingviolence/0,4559,7-233-46553-169521–,00.html
Contact Us. (n.d.). Retrieved April 17, 2016, from http://www.loveisrespect.org/for-yourself/contact-us/
Dating Abuse Statistics (Rep.). (2016). Retrieved April 17, 2016, from Break the Cycle website: http://www.breakthecycle.org/sites/default/files/Dating Abuse Statistics Mar 2016.pdf
How Common is Dating Violence? (n.d.). Retrieved April 17, 2016, from http://www.breakthecycle.org/how-common-dating-violence
Saving Lives, Giving Hope. (n.d.). Retrieved April 17, 2016, from http://www.thehotline.org/