This guide from the Violence Against Women Research Consortium provides instruction in what teens need to know about teen dating abuse (TDA) if they are experiencing it or want to help a friend who is.
The guide defines “teen dating violence” as a “pattern of controlling, abusive, or aggressive behavior towards a current or former dating partner, either in person or using social media or texting.” One in three teens experience some form of dating abuse. Some examples of TDA provided in this guide are efforts to control a partner’s social interactions with others, efforts to control a partner’s appearance and behavior, and pressure for nude photos of a partner. The guide also discusses who is at risk for partner abuse in terms of characteristics that may draw controlling abusive persons prone to dominating others. Regarding the expectation that an abusive dating relationship will improve, the guide advises this is unlikely without therapeutic resources. The guide also discusses issues that may arise in occasions when a teen talks to an adult about dating abuse, including mandated reporting for adults in certain professions, confidentiality in communications. Talking to a friend about TDA is also discussed. One section of the guide entitled, “Some Do’s and Don’ts” provides lists of short instructions on what to do and not do when conversing with a friend about his/her TDA victimization. 1 general resource and 7 resources specific to Arizona