Teen Dating Violence Resources

Do you suspect a friend or relative is experiencing teen dating violence? Learn what teen dating violence encompasses, including the consequences and reasons why it may occur.

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  • Nearly 1.5 million high school students nationwide experience physical abuse from a dating partner in a single year.
  • One in three adolescents in the U.S. is a victim of physical, sexual, emotional or verbal abuse from a dating partner – a figure that far exceeds rates of other types of youth violence.
  • One in 10 high school students has been purposefully hit, slapped or physically hurt by a boyfriend or girlfriend in the last 12 months.
  • One quarter of high school girls have been victims of physical or sexual abuse.
  • Approximately 70% of college students say they have been sexually coerced.
  • Girls and young women between the ages of 16 and 24 experience the highest rate of intimate partner violence — almost triple the national average.
  • Violent behavior typically begins between the ages of 12 and 18.
  • The severity of intimate partner violence is often greater in cases where the pattern of abuse was established in adolescence.
  • About 72% of eighth and ninth graders are “dating”.
  • Eight states currently do not include dating relationships in their definition of domestic violence. As a result, young victims of dating abuse often cannot apply for restraining orders.
  • Currently only one juvenile domestic violence court in the country focuses exclusively on teen dating violence.
  • Only 33% of teens who were in a violent relationship ever told anyone about the abuse.
  • 81% of parents believe teen dating violence is not an issue or admit they don’t know if it’s an issue.
  • A teen’s confusion about the law and their desire for confidentiality are two of the most significant barriers stopping young victims of abuse from seeking help.
DASH stands for Dating Abuse Stops Here. DASH offers information and resources for teens and their parents or friends with the goal of spreading awareness and reducing dating abuse.

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People Magazine Story

**trigger warning, this story is graphic and may be disturbing

“Sarah Van Zanten, 15, was lying on the floor, an ice pack on her aching ribs. For a moment, she had no idea where she was; then her boyfriend’s face came into focus…”

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Is it possible to spot an abusive partner before you get involved?

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Chicago Tribune Story:

“Sheela Raja remembers treating a victim of teen dating violence who at first felt too ashamed to talk about the experience. Instead, the victim buried the trauma in alcohol until she finally opened up during therapy…”

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