Define dating violence

In reality, there are a myriad of reasons why it is difficult to leave abusive relationships, and the person being abused is the expert of their own situation.

Building off a long history of research in the area of intimate partner violence, NIJ is now looking to relationships during adolescence to understand the factors that put individuals at risk for involvement in abusive romantic relationships as adults.

This effort began with a series of workshops in 20 that culminated in the development and coordination of a federal interagency workgroup. NIJ has also funded research examining the nature, characteristics and extent of dating violence; risk and protective factors; long-term and short-term outcomes; and systematic evaluations of teen dating violence prevention and intervention programs, policies and legislation.

Loving someone does not mean that you can never say “no” to sex.

No matter what kind of relationship you have, if you are forced to have sex, it is rape.

Magnitude of the Problem: According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 9% of high school students reported that they had been purposely physically hurt by a dating partner in the past year (CDC – 2011 Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance questionnaire).

A survey of adult victims of dating violence found that nearly 1 in 5 women and nearly 1 in 7 men first experienced partner violence between the ages of 11 and 17 (CDC, 2012 National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey).

Prevention: Close to half of adolescents between the ages of 11 and 14 have dated (Liz Claiborne, Inc./Teen Research Unlimited, Tween and Teen Dating Violence and Abuse Study, 2008).

Since dating relationships begin in early adolescence, prevention programs must start with this age group in order to be effective in deterring teen dating violence.

Unfortunately, teen dating violence—the type of intimate partner violence that occurs between two young people who are, or who were once in, an intimate relationship—is a serious problem in the United States.

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