If you or someone you know is in a relationship where one person acts like this, there are places you or your friend can go for help. Creating awareness about dating violence among teens can help prevent more teens from getting physically or emotionally abused in their relationships.For example, you might talk to your guidance counselor about hosting an event at your school.Additionally, De Ladesmo says that some adults, even those in school environments who receive training on the subject, don't know the legal parameters surrounding reporting an incident and notifying administrators, law enforcement, child services, or other agencies."You don’t want someone to disclose abuse to you and afterwards have to tell them that you are required to report the information they entrusted you with to the police, when maybe the young person did not want police involvement," she says.Furthermore, Jagdish Khubchandani, an associate professor of community health at Ball State University, says that research has shown that signs of abuse, particularly if a victim speaks up, are often met with ridicule from peers.Students aren't the only ones having trouble deciphering the signs and taking them seriously; many adults, including those who work at schools or in other situations with young people, have trouble as well.
A similar pattern of events emerged in the recent shooting at Great Mills High School in Maryland on March 20, when 17-year-old Austin Rollins shot two classmates at the school, including his recent ex-girlfriend Jaelyn Willey.
Willey died from her injuries days after the shooting. be able to partially prevent violent incidents like mass shooting if signs of teen dating violence, especially violence against women, was taken more seriously? According to advocacy organization Loveisrespect, one in three adolescents experience verbal, emotional, sexual, or physical abuse from a dating partner, and over 1.5 million high school students suffer physical abuse from an intimate partner every year.
This behavior on the shooters's parts is indicative of a much larger and systemic issue that's not getting as much attention: teen dating violence. Additionally, women ages 16 to 24 experience dating violence at rates three times the national average, and roughly 43% of LGBTQ adolescents experience physical dating violence, according to the Urban Institute.
You can call the 24-hour National Dating Abuse Helpline at 1-866-331-9474 or go to Love Is for live chat support. Text “loveis” to 77054 to begin texting with an advocate who can help you.
Also, check out the Runaway and Homeless Youth and Relationship Violence Toolkit.