See also our Teens Hurting Teens Study about criminal violence between youth aged 12 to 17
Warning Signs for Teens
Are you in an abusive relationship?
Are any of these things true of you?
your weight, appearance or grades have changed dramatically since you started seeing this person
you worry about how they will react to things you say or do
you feel that your needs and desires come second
you think twice about expressing your own thoughts or feelings
you worry you might make the "wrong" decision about what you wear, where you go and who with hang out with
your family or friends warn you about this person or worry about your safety
you are frightened of this person, maybe not before but lately
If you answered "yes" to even one of these signs, talk with someone for advice.
Warning Signs in a Dating Partner
Are any of these things true of your dating partner? Does the person you are dating...
tell you they cannot live without you
blame you for all their problems
break or hit things to intimidate you
threaten to hurt themselves or others if you break up
act jealous, say jealous things, or forbid you to speak with certain people
pressure you into having sex or force you to do sexual things you don't want to do by saying, "if you really loved me you would..."
humiliate you and belittle your opinions
slap or shove you in a seemingly playful way, but it happens often and doesn't seem right
seem jealous and possessive about the time you spend with your friends
constantly check up on you and ask where you are and what you are doing
have severe mood swings or frequent bad moods
want you to limit your other activities so you can spend more time together
want your relationship to get too serious too quickly and refuse to take "no" for an answer
blame past bad relationships on everything or everybody else instead of accepting any of the responsibility
abuses drugs or alcohol and pressure you to take them also, even if you don't want to
believe men should be in control and women should do what they're told
treat you like property rather than a person they value
call you names, kick, hit, or push you in anger
get aggressive or abusive toward inanimate objects or animals
force you to choose between being with them or with your friends or family
lash out or blame you for having a bad day
use or own weapons or have a history of violence and fighting
blow minor disagreements or issues way out of proportion
dislike your parents and friends
hit, push, choke, kick or physically hurt you
threaten to break up with you or accuse you of planning to break up with them
disrepects their mother or generally treat their parents badly
insult you, criticise you, especially in front of others
brag about mistreating other people
have trouble controlling their temper
Notice that being hit or physically abused is only one sign of an abusive relationship. You can be in an abusive relationship without ever being hit. Abusive partners are self-centred, immature, manipulative, can't appreciate the views or needs of others, shift blame onto others, don't take responsibility for the bad things they do or say, are possessive and treat people like their property, and put others down to feel good about themselves. They are disrespectful and may have problems keeping their emotions under control.
Am I in an unhealthy dating relationship? Is someone you know in an unhealthy relationship?
Use this 2-page checklist to understand the early warning signs in adult dating relationships.
Red Flags in Relationships