Teen Dating Violence



  • Physical: Most overt
  • Mental/Emotional/Verbal: Subtle remarks to yelling and name calling
  1. Hard to discern because no physical marks
  2. Done under guise of love or concern, not anger
  3. Used to control behavior through humiliation and degradation
  • Sexual
  1. Forced sex
  2. Coercion and use of threats
  3. Trying to get partner to go further than ready to
  4. Reproductive coercion and sabotage
  • Cyber: Use of text, phone, internet, social networking, “sexting”, etc.


Differences from Adult DV

  • Peers/Bystanders
  1. Peer groups can dictate how couple/individual behaves
  2. Rights/choices of individual become subordinate
  3. Peer groups can support attitudes/behavior that breed violence
  4. Youth are volatile to influence of peers


Warning Signs

  • Jealousy (#1)
  • Controlling behavior
  • Quick involvement (attachment/love at 1st sight)
  • Unrealistic expectations
  • Dependency
  • Isolation
  • Blaming
  • Abrupt mood changes



  • 1 in 3 high school students have or will be involved in an abusive relationship
  • 40% of teenage girls have been hit or beaten
  • 1 in 5 teen dating couples report violence in their relationship
  • 1 in 3 high school students experience sexual, physical, verbal or emotional violence in a relationship
  • Local Stats, out of 53 students surveyed at THS:
  1. 13% have been in an unhealthy relationship
  2. 40% know someone that has been in an unhealthy relationship


Short and long term effects of Teen DV

  • Short Term



Isolation from family and friends Threatening harm in any way
Loss of interest in activities Insulting a dating partner in public
Making excuses for partner’s behavior Witness imbalance of power/control
Noticeable changes is eating or sleeping           – Physical: arm always around the person
Alcohol or drug use           – Social: monopolizes person’s time
Loss of self-confidence           – Electronic: constantly checking messages
Strange bruising or injury Damaging partner’s personal belongings
Distracted Attempts to control what partner wears
Extreme defensiveness
Sudden request for schedule changes


  • Long Term




Risky behavior Loss of friends & respect
Depression Physical health problems
Sleep disturbance Disciplinary Consequences @ school
Inability to succeed in school Criminal record
Eating disorders Loneliness
Drug/Alcohol use/abuse
Become violent themselves


I have the right to . . .

  • Be treated with respect.
  • Trust my instincts.
  • Say “no” and be heard.
  • Have my privacy respected.
  • Accept a gift without having to give anything in return.
  • Ask for help if I need it.
  • Have someone point out my strengths and assets.
  • Have loved ones support me.
  • Have private time and my own space.
  • Have others listen to what I have to say–even if they don’t agree.
  • Live a violence-free life.
  • Be good to myself.


I have the responsibility to . . .

  • Communicate my thoughts, ideas and feelings clearly.
  • Stick to my limits and boundaries.
  • Respect the limits and boundaries of others.
  • Listen to what others have to say and have the right to reject their ideas, but not the person.
  • Treat others as my equal.


I have the right to be happy!

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