Teen dating violence is more prevalent than ever. More than one out of every 10 teens reported being physically abused by their boyfriend or girlfriend in 2015, according to statistics released by the National Institute of Justice. As more and more reports circulate about date rapes and other forms of sexual and physical violence in high schools and on college campuses, lawmakers and college boards are struggling to come up with a good answer to the question, “What can be done to stop dating violence?”
Break the Cycle, in conjunction with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, is billing February as Teen Dating Violence Awareness Month. It is no accident that February is the same month that features Valentine’s Day: dating violence is a particular problem among young people in close, intimate relationships.
Although young people tend to gravitate toward one another as they take steps toward becoming fully formed adults, some of these teens and preteens lack the necessary social skills and basic understandings of who they are in the world. This can make it difficult for them to engage in healthy relationships.
It is certainly bad anytime a young person engages in violence, whether it’s violence against a friend, a family member or a loved one. The problem becomes much worse, however, when the violence becomes a pattern and manifests at a later age, long after the teenager has transitioned into adulthood. Far too many cases of domestic violence involve individuals who simply never learned how to properly treat and respect the people they care about.
The problem is not just limited to perpetrators of teen dating violence. Studies also show that a person who is victimized by dating violence at an early age is more likely to be a victim of domestic violence later on in life.
One of the goals of the sponsors of Teen Dating Violence Awareness Month is to increase recognition of the dangers faced by young people so that teen dating violence can be stopped before it starts.
For additional information, check out the Healthfinder.gov site devoted to “Teen Dating Violence Awareness Month.”
If you or a loved one has been charged with domestic violence, aggravated assault or a threat crime in New Jersey, you need to talk to an experienced criminal defense lawyer. The skilled South Jersey criminal defense attorneys at the Law Offices of John W. Tumelty will help you fight your criminal charges and avoid the most severe penalties. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation about your case.