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What is Dating Violence?


Dating violence is violence which can happen on a first date, or with a regular partner at anytime within a relationship.  It often occurs when a dating partner feels jealous, has been drinking or when a young woman says “no” to sex.  Dating violence may be a single act of violence – such as sexual assault or “date rape” – or it may be a pattern of abusive behaviour and mistreatment that is repeated – and often escalates – over time.  Although both men and women may act abusively, the abuse of women by men is more pervasive and usually more severe.  Dating violence can happen as early as elementary school.


Types of Dating Violence?


Physical Assault - Young women are shaken, hit, punched, slapped and kicked by the young men they date.  Physical abuse may result in anything from a black eye to hospitalization for multiple injuries.


Emotional Abuse - This can involve being called names such as “fat”, ugly”, “stupid”.  It could involve being accused of “sleeping around”.  It can be a threat of violence against a person or the things that they love “(like pets).  Sometimes it may be a threat themselves (I’ll kill myself if you dump me!)


Sexual Abuse - Often called date rape, involves any unwanted sexual contact from kissing, touching to forced sexual intercourse.  Often young women enter into a sexual relationship with boyfriends because they are threatened with losing them.

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