Signs of Teen Dating Violence

Dating violence is all too common.  Statistics show that 1 in 3 teenagers have experienced or will experience violence in a dating relationship. In dating violence, one partner tries to maintain power and control over the other through abuse. Dating violence crosses all racial, economic and social lines. Most victims are young women, who are also at greater risk for serious injury. Young women need a dating safety plan.

Warning signs that a teen may become violent/abusive:

  • Quick to get involved in a dating relationship
  • Constantly call, text, e-mail or send instant messages (including abusing Facebook or MySpace)
  • Verbally abusive, calls his/her partner names and criticizes his/her partner frequently
  • Does not care about his/her partner’s feelings and will not take “no” for an answer
  • Controlling or bossy behavior
  • Believes in rigid sex roles and gender expectations
  • Demands to know where his/her partner is and who he/she is with at all times
  • Extremely jealous
  • Isolates his/her partner from friends and family or from the things he/she enjoys doing

Warning signs that a teen may be experiencing dating violence include:

  • Physical signs of injury such as bruises, scratches or other injuries
  • Avoids friends/isolating behaviors
  • Behaves differently around his/her boyfriend/girlfriend
  • Excessive text messaging or calling from dating partner
  • Makes excuses or apologizes for his/her boyfriend/girlfriend’s behavior
  • Dating partner monitors calls and emails
  • Dating partner makes frequent accusations of “cheating” or flirting
  • A dating partner who makes threats of suicide or self-injury in the event of a breakup

What Do I Do Now?