We recognize that dating abuse knows no boundaries and that both men and women can be both perpetrators and victims of abuse.
However, the vast majority of reported dating abuse is men as perpetrators and women as victims–for this reason, the victim will often be refered to as “she” on this website.
According to the organization that you work with, you may have particular expectations for the expression, degree and boundaries in relationships between the youth that you serve, but if the kids that you work with feel like you’re simply the relationship police, they may not hear concerns that you have about the health and safety of their relationships.
Here’s a great healthy relationship definition from the Virginia Sexual and Domestic Violence Action Alliance (2009): A significant majority of students report experience of sexual harassment.
Here are some signs you might notice if someone is experiencing dating abuse.
Remember, just because you see one sign does not necessarily mean it is an abusive relationship; but if you think the relationship is headed that way, the time to talk to is now.
After the violence/explosion stage, the partner will likely apologize and promise never to abuse the partner again.
If the partner stays in the relationship and forgives the abuser, the relationship cycles back into the honeymoon stage, until the tension begins to build again.
While it’s necessary to educate young people about the warning signs and impact of abusive relationships, it’s at least equally productive to talk with them about relationship rights, respect and the dynamics of healthy relationships.Here is a model of how it works: Every relationship is different, but the one thing that is common to most abusive dating relationships is that the violence escalates over time and becomes more and more dangerous for the young victim.The first part of the pattern is the honeymoon stage.During this stage, being with a significant other seems like the best thing in the world; the partner is kind, loving, and thoughtful. During this stage, an abusive partner will begin to engage in small abusive tactics such as name-calling or dictating who the partner should or should not hang out with.Sometimes, an abuser will apologize for the abusive behavior and the relationship can return to the honeymoon stage, where everything can feel “back to normal” until it enters into the tension-building stage again.