Some progress toward awareness, prevention, and intervention with these youth has been made.Organizations like loveisrespect, Futures without Violence, and Break the Cycle have increased awareness and provided resources for teens.

These youth are at higher risk for being victimized and are experiencing the same types of violence as those in opposite-sex relationships, but are the least likely to tell anyone or seek help. Along with the same reasons why people don’t leave heterosexual relationships, LGBTQ youth also have to worry about the threat and fear of being outed by their partner.

Knowing this, interventions tailored specifically to the LGBTQ community should be developed.

Secondly, teen dating violence is just as dangerous and the impact is just as far reaching.

Beyond the immediate impact of abuse, victimized teens are also at risk for serious health issues.

We can’t expect them to seek out help or use the resources provided if they’re too scared, too confused, or are unaware of what’s really happening to them.

We need to challenge their beliefs about teen dating violence and provide resources designed specifically for teens involved in violent relationships.

Research shows that abused teens are more likely to use alcohol, tobacco, and cocaine, engage in unhealthy weight control behaviors and risky sexual behaviors, are more likely to become pregnant, and are more likely to seriously consider or attempt suicide.

These are serious, long-term consequences that can negatively affect lifetime well-being.

Myth: If a person stays in an abusive relationship, it must not really be that bad. Almost 80% of girls who have been physically abused will continue to date their abusers. These include fear, emotional dependence, low self-esteem, feeling responsible, confusing jealousy and possessiveness with love, threats of more violence, or hope that the abuser will change.

Fact: When things get bad, people leave, escape, or protect themselves. For teenagers, these reasons are compounded by peer pressure, a fear of getting in trouble with adults, and the potential loss of friends.

Unfortunately, teen dating violence—the type of intimate partner violence that occurs between two young people who are, or who were once in, an intimate relationship—is a serious problem in the United States.