Abusive Dating Relationships

Physical and sexual violence in early adult relationships often starts during teenage dating when males and females form their first conclusions about what to expect and accept from each other. In many cases, teenagers are predisposed to accept physical abuse because of exposure to it in their homes, either as victims or witnesses. Only one in 25 adolescent victims seeks professional help. Members of the LGBT community experience violence in their intimate relationships at about the same rate as heterosexuals.

Abusive relationships often involve a pattern of repeated verbal, sexual, emotional, and physical abuse that escalates the longer the relationship continues. Some of the indicators of an abusive relationship are verbal abuse; isolation from friends and loved ones; fear of the partner’s temper; fear of abandonment by the partner; accepting the partner’s controlling behavior; fear of intimidation; the distortion of the partner’s hurtful behavior; assuming responsibility for the partner’s abusive behavior; feeling trapped; and fear of leaving the abusive partner. Some abusive relationships include behaviors that are in violation of the Code of Student Conduct and/or state laws.

If you become aware that a student is in an abusive relationship: