Teens and Dating Violence, Your Rights In A Relationship

Dating Violence is…

…the intentional verbal, physical, sexual, or emotional maltreatment of a dating partner for the purpose of gaining control and power over that person.

Examples of Abuse in Dating Relationships Include:

Emotional Abuse:

  • Making a Partner Feel Insecure: name calling; put downs; criticisms; humiliating; attacking the person’s capabilities; saying “Nobody wants you.”
  • Mind Games: making you feel guilty; making you feel crazy; blaming the partner for things that go wrong; having the partner wait by the phone.
  • Isolating the Dating Partner from friends & family; pressuring the partner to give up activities, sports, work, and hobbies; keeping tabs on the dating partner when they go out by paging, calling or dropping by.
  • Using Intimidation: Breaking objects; punching walls; threatening looks; threatening to hurt the partner; threatening the partner’s family, friends or pet; destroying treasured belongings.

Acting Extremely Jealous: not allowing the dating partner to talk to anyone; accusing the partner of flirting or having sexual intercourse with others.

Physical Abuse:

  • Shoving or pushing; squeezing a shoulder; restraining by holding a wrist or holding a hand tightly; shaking, pulling hair; slapping, punching; kicking; choking; pushing out of a car.

Sexual Abuse:

  • Any unwanted sexual contact, comments or gesturing within a relationship; manipulating a partner into doing something sexual that makes them feel uncomfortable.

How Do I Know if I am Being Abused?

Does Your Partner…

  • Call You Names?
  • Tell You What to Wear or How To Do Your Hair?
  • Get Extremely Jealous When You Talk To Others?
  • Check Up On You When You Go Out?
  • Threaten You When You Disagree With Him or Her?
  • Ask You Not To See Your Friends or Participate in Activities?
  • Put You Down or Embarrass You in Front of Others?
  • Destroy Things That You Care About?
  • Force You To Engage in Sexual Activities That Make You Feel Uncomfortable?

Ever Hold You Down, Push, Or Hit You?

“Yes” answers indicate that your relationship is unhealthy and perhaps even abusive.

If you are in an unhealthy relationship and need to talk to someone, consider talking to a parent or other trusted adult about your relationship or Call 2ndFloor, 180‘s Youth Helpline at 1-888-222-2228.


How to Help Yourself

  • Take Abuse Seriously
  • Reach Out to Others – talk to a trusted adult, school counselor, or friends about the abuse.
  • If You Are In Physical Danger, call the Police
  • Call 2NDFLOOR, 180’s Youth Helpline at 888-222-2228
  • Plan for Your Safety
  • Seek Counseling

How to Help a Friend Who is Being Abused

Personal Rights in a Relationship

  1. THE RIGHT to refuse requests without having to feel guilty or selfish.
  2. THE RIGHT to express my feelings, including anger, as long as I don’t violate the rights of others.
  3. THE RIGHT to be competitive and to achieve.
  4. THE RIGHT to have my needs be as important as the needs of other people.
  5. THE RIGHT to decide which activities will fulfill my needs.
  6. THE RIGHT to make mistakes and be responsible for them.
  7. THE RIGHT to have my opinions given the same respect and consideration as others’.
  8. THE RIGHT to change my mind.
  9. THE RIGHT to be independent.
  10. THE RIGHT to be treated respectfully.
  11. THE RIGHT to be cooperative and giving and not be taken advantage of.
  12. THE RIGHT to be safe.