Detect, Communicate and Resolve Dating Abuse

One out of four teenagers report physical, verbal, emotional and sexual abuse annually. One out of eleven teenagers are dating abuse victims. In the United States of America, one out of five women have been sexually and physically abused while dating in high school. Also, students in abusive relationships in high school are three times more likely to be abused in their college relationships…

Teenage dating abuse is associated with unsafe sexual behaviors which can result in pregnancy, sexually transmitted diseases and HIV. Not only do victims report physical injuries but wild drinking, suicide attempts, early sexual behaviors and being involved in fights as well. Additionally, drug, tobacco and alcohol consumption rates are twice as high in women that report physical or sexual abuse during a relationship than those that do not experience dating violence.

If you lived or are living in a home were violence is a pattern, it is likely that you will percieve an abusive relationship as normal. It is not. Therefore, these behaviors can affect different aspects of your daily life such as academic performances.

Related: Seeing Emotional Abuse

Dating violence is NOT normal nor acceptable.

Dating abuse may start off as games, heavy jokes, "play fighting", nicknames, manipulation and even jealousy; we think that these expressions are because of love but in reality, they reduce your self-esteem, liberty and wellbeing. That’s why you need to identify signals and behaviors that affect your relationship. Here are some pattern examples:

  1. Jealousy

  2. Restricts you from your friends, what to wear, and what to talk about

  3. Isolates you from what you enjoy

  4. Blames you for everything

  5. Sudden mood swings and breaks or throws stuff

  6. Abuses animals and other people

  7. Is inflexible in the roles of a man and a woman

  8. Jokes with degrading or profane words

 

Take a stand! Love yourself! Self-love is not selfishness, it’s acceptance and celebration of the characteristics that make you unique and special. It’s finding a special and safe place where you are in peace with yourself and you can celebrate life. Remember you have the power and authority to choose your friends and relationships, and to make every experience an opportunity to be a better human being. Take a stand and make a decision that helps change your atmosphere. You can change your path and become a part of the solution and avoid being a part of the statistics.

You are not alone!

National Sexual Assault Hotline: 1-800-656-4673

National Hotline: 1-800-799-7233

Puerto Rico 24/7 Línea Pas: 1-800-981-0023

Information: Proyecto Enlace Educativo Levántate, Fundación Mujer de F.E., Inc. (2013)

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