In 1995, 7% of all murder victims were young women who were killed by their boyfriends.In situations of dating violence, one partner tries to exert power and control over the other partner through physical abuse or sexual assault.
Unhealthy relationships can start early and last a lifetime.
Teens often think some behaviors, like teasing and name calling, are a “normal” part of a relationship.
Dating violence is violence that occurs within a dating relationship rather than, say, marriage; and dating violence is as much a problem for teenagers as it is for adults.
In fact, statistics show that one-in-three teenagers have experienced teenage domestic violence in a dating relationship.
Researchers seek to identify the risk factors indicating an increased likelihood for dating violence and the protective factors that buffer against dating violence.
Risk factors and protective factors can be found across multiple contexts or domains, including factors specific to an individual, peer group or social group, relationship, or community/environment.
In an NIJ-funded study of 5,647 teens (51.8 percent female, 74.6 percent Caucasian) from 10 middle schools and high schools (representing grades 7 to 12) throughout New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania, researchers identified several factors related to increased risk for dating violence.
The researchers focused especially on cyber abuse but found that the following factors related to multiple forms of abuse: Another NIJ-funded study examined multiple risk factors among 223 at-risk, low-income teens in central Virginia.
There are also risk factors that contribute to the likelihood of a teen becoming a perpetrator of dating violence.
Many of these are developmentally normal in youth, such as little to no relationship experience, vulnerability to peer pressure, and unsophisticated communication skills.
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