Mental HealthPhysical Health

Unhealthy Teen Relationships

By October 24, 2018 No Comments

Did you know that nearly 20 people per minute are physically abused by their partners in the United States [1]This equates to nearly 10 million women and men in the United States being physically abused by their partners within a year [1]Teenage physical abuse accounts for nearly 15% out of the 10 million [2]. However, domestic violence isn’t just limited to physical abuse, it also includes emotional abuse. Even if you don’t know anyone suffering from domestic violence, it’s important to be aware of the warning signs and to understand how to deal with it.

The statistics

1 in 3 women and 1 in 4 men have been victims of [some form of] physical violence by an intimate partner within their lifetime. [1]

On a typical day, there are more than 20,000 phone calls placed to domestic violence hotlines nationwide. [1]

Nearly 20.9% of female high school students and 13.4% of male high school students report being physically or sexually abused by a dating partner. [2]

Nearly 1.5 million high school students in the United States are physically abused by dating partners every year. [2]

57% of teens know someone who has been physically, sexually, or verbally abusive in a dating relationship. Only 33% of teenage dating abuse victims ever told anyone about it. [2]

Characteristics of a healthy teen relationship

A vital part of a healthy relationship is RESPECT. Your wishes and feelings should be valued and it’s important for you to do the same for your partner. 

COMMUNICATION. It’s important to speak to each other and to not hide feelings from each other.

SUPPORT. Make sure to reassure and encourage each other. Healthy relationships are about bringing out the best traits in each other and lifting each other up, not putting them down.

BOUNDARIES. Feel comfortable enough to still participate in your favorite activities/hobbies without your partner.  

How to spot an unhealthy relationship

The signs of an unhealthy relationship include, but are not limited to, controlling behavior, constant jealousy, isolating the partner from friends and family, undermining the partner’s confidence or feeling of self-worth, peer pressure into doing something against your will, threats, physical assault, and sexual assault.

How to get help

If you need help, please contact the National Teen Dating Abuse Helpline.

Call 1-866-331-9474, chat online at, or text “loveis” to 22522, any time, 24/7/365.

You will be connected with an advocate who is trained to educate, support, and advocate for those involved with dating abuse relationships and you can talk about anything ranging from healthy relationships and red flags about relationships. is a helpful resource for teens in dealing with dating abuse. You can learn how to get help for yourself or for other friends, family, or even strangers. There is also information about healthy relationships, about the different types of abuse, quizzes, and more resources.


You can also call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233 (SAFE).


In addition, here is the contact information for Howard County’s Sexual Assault and Domestic Violence Center.

Hopeworks of Howard County

9770 Patuxent Woods Drive, Suite 300
Columbia, Maryland 21046

MAIN OFFICE | Monday – Friday | 9am-5pm
(410) 997–0304

24 Hour Sexual, Dating and Domestic Violence Helpline
(410) 997–2272 or 1 (800) 572-0191




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