Emotional effects of dating violence
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention defines dating aggression as physical, sexual, or psychological hostility or attacks that occur between current or past dating partners, and can even be extended to stalking and other forms of harassment.
Sexual aggression is any form of unwanted or sexual behavior, from nonconsensual contact to oral, vaginal or anal rape.
Those who seek to control their intimate partners, use methods similar to those of prison guards, who recognize that physical control is never easily accomplished without the cooperation of the prisoner.
The most effective way to gain cooperation is through subversive manipulation of the mind and feelings of the victim, who then becomes a psychological, as well as a physical, prisoner.
They were most likely to speak up or otherwise get involved when they saw a friend’s boyfriend or girlfriend behaving in a jealous or controlling manner, when they heard comments such as “she deserved to be raped,” or when they believed their friend was being abused or was in a potentially dangerous situation.
Fewer students were likely to express concern or disapproval over sexual jokes, comments, and gestures.
In the above study, researchers found that girls who experienced both physical and sexual dating violence were almost twice as likely to attempt suicide as those who experience one or the other, and boys who experienced both were almost three times as likely.
Two thirds of teenagers in abusive dating relationships never tell anyone about the abuse, so it is no surprise that many parents are unaware of the high rate of teen dating violence in this country, or don’t think it is an issue in their lives.
Some teenagers become more sexual in their behavior after experiencing dating abuse because they now derive their sense of self-worth from the physical contact.
Emotional abuse in a marriage is such a covert form of domestic violence and abuse that many people aren’t able to recognize they are a victim.
A spouse may have a feeling that something is wrong.
Surprisingly, students were least likely to get involved when a friend appeared to be drunk at a party and were taken out of the room. According to the University of New Hampshire report, some of the biggest barriers were a desire to avoid drama, fear of social repercussion, the nature of their own relationship with either the victim or the perpetrator or a feeling that the behavior wasn’t actually abusive.
Where does all this leave the victim of high school dating abuse?They may feel stressed out; a sense of depression; anxiety but they can’t quite identify what is causing those feelings.