Dating Abuse

Dating abuse…it’s a pattern of behaviors that someone uses to control a boyfriend or girlfriend – where she goes, what she does, who he sees, what he wears. Sound familiar?

Like any form of abuse, it can be:
Physical – Hitting, kicking, restraining, grabbing or pushing.
Emotional and mental – From constant put downs and accusations that you’re cheating to making it hard for you to see your family or friends.
Verbal – Name-calling, berating, embarrassing comments made to or about you.
Sexual – Forcing you to do something you don’t want to do or making sexual jokes about you.
If it’s hurtful and you don’t like it, it’s abuse – and you don’t deserve it.

Dating abuse can happen to anyone. It can go on even after a couple has broken up. It happens in heterosexual and same-sex relationships – and it can be a guy or a girl who abuses a partner.
Abuse is about one person who behaves in ways that control and hurt a dating partner.

If abuse is part of your relationship, you’re far from alone. One in three teenagers say they know someone who’s been physically or emotionally hurt by a romantic partner.
That means you probably know someone who is being abused in their relationship.

If you’re being abused – or think you might be – we can help. If you have a friend that you’re worried about, we can help with that too. Call our free helpline at 1.877.890.7788.

Meanwhile, check out the Red Flags of Dating Abuse and the Power and Control Wheel. If abusive things are happening in your relationship, please talk to someone you trust or give us a call.

Click here for an interactive guide to assist you in customizing a safety plan online, developed by Break the Cycle.