Dating physical abuse

The Center for Relationship Abuse Awareness describes dating abuse as a "pattern of abusive and coercive behaviors used to maintain power and control over a former or current intimate partner." The Family & Community Development support group at e Citizen in Singapore has described what it calls tell-tale signs of an abusive relationship.

These can include psychological abuse, emotional blackmail, sexual abuse, physical abuse and psychological manipulation.

Individuals of all walks of life can find themselves in an abusive relationship.

Abuse can occur regardless of the couple's age, race, income, or other demographic traits.

That's according to Choose Respect, a national initiative to help adolescents and young teens age 11-14 form healthy relationships to prevent dating abuse.

The 2013 national Youth Risk Behavior Survey found approximately 10% of high school students reported physical victimization and 10% reported sexual victimization from a dating partner in the 12 months* before they were surveyed. Teens receive messages about how to behave in relationships from peers, adults in their lives, and the media. Risks of having unhealthy relationships increase for teens who: Dating violence can be prevented when teens, families, organizations, and communities work together to implement effective prevention strategies.

All too often these examples suggest that violence in a relationship is normal, but violence is never acceptable.

Dating abuse is a pattern of abusive behaviors -- usually a series of abusive behaviors over a course of time -- used to exert power and control over a dating partner.

Every relationship is different, but the things that unhealthy and abusive relationships have in common are issues of power and control.