What is Teen Dating Violence?
What does an abusive relationship look like? The immediate scenario that pops into your head is likely not a teen or pre-teen couple. But unfortunately, teen dating violence is reality for 1.5 million high school students across the US every year who experience some form of dating violence from a boyfriend or girlfriend. Women between the ages of 16 and 24 are at greatest risk of becoming teen dating abuse victims.
Dating violence is defined as a pattern of controlling or abusive behaviors perpetrated by a current or former dating partner. Abusers can be male or female, and experts are seeing these patterns of behavior in younger and younger students as pre-teens and elementary students engage in dating relationships before developing healthy relationship skills and boundaries. Abuse occurs in-person as well as through cyberbullying and cyber-control. Statistics show that 72% of students in 8th and 9th grades are in dating relationships.
Teens use abuse to manipulate and control the other person in the relationship through behaviors ranging from intimidation to severe physical and sexual abuse. When unchecked, abusive behaviors typically escalate as an abuser gets older, making it essential for teens to get help at the first sign of abuse.
Just Say YES speakers are dedicated to reducing these numbers through presenting ways of effectively addressing boundaries in dating, refusal skills, and establishing a positive circle of friends. Friends and trusted adults can help students recognize unhealthy relationships and empower them to establish healthy boundaries. Book one of our speakers to give a teen dating violence program at your school.
What does Teen Dating Violence Look Like?
Teen Dating Violence statistics
- 1 in every 5 high school students report being physically and/or sexually abused by a dating partner – Journal of the American Medical Association
- 1 in every 5 students between the ages of 11 and 14 say their friends are victims of dating violence, with nearly half experiencing verbal abuse – Futures Without Violence
- 1 in 3 teen girls is a victim of physical, emotional or verbal abuse from a dating partner - Futures Without Violence
- 43% of reported cases of dating violence ocured in a school building or on school grounds – Day One
- 50% of 14-24-year-olds have experienced digital dating abuse - Day One
- 2 out of 3 teens in abusive relationships do not tell anyone about the abuse - Day One
- Among adult victims of rape, physical violence and/or stalking by a dating partner, 22.4% of women and 15% of men first experience some form of partner violence between 11 and 17 years of age – CDC
- Victims of digital abuse are twice as likely to be physically abused, 2.5 times as likely to be psychologically abused, and 5 times as likely to be sexually coerced - Urban Institute
- Teaching young people about healthy relationships and ways to avoid physical dating violence can reduce physical and sexual dating violence by 60% - Day One
What we do
Just Say YES provides programs that not only present the dangerous facts about teen dating violence, but take one step further to equip students to make better decisions. Our positive approach to prevention gives students the knowledge and awareness to avoid or seek help for dating violence. Just Say YES speakers connect with middle and high school students through their own personal stories, the latest research and practical, relevant steps to get help. Contact us to have a Program Coordinator work with you to schedule a teen dating violence program for your school.