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What leads to dating teen violence

It is also evident that many service providers and institutions (such as law enforcement, prosecutors and judges) that interact with teens have limited knowledge of complex abuse dynamics in all intimate-partner relationships, as well as limited knowledge in collaborating on ongoing safety strategies with and for teen victims.

Other identified gaps are present in rural programs.

Morin received her Master of Social Work from the University of New England.

Teen dating violence — also called intimate relationship violence or intimate partner violence among adolescents or adolescent relationship abuse — includes physical, psychological or sexual abuse; harassment; or stalking of any person ages 12 to 18 in the context of a past or present romantic or consensual relationship.

Building off a long history of research in the area of intimate partner violence, NIJ is now looking to relationships during adolescence to understand the factors that put individuals at risk for involvement in abusive romantic relationships as adults.

This effort began with a series of workshops in 20 that culminated in the development and coordination of a federal interagency workgroup. NIJ has also funded research examining the nature, characteristics and extent of dating violence; risk and protective factors; long-term and short-term outcomes; and systematic evaluations of teen dating violence prevention and intervention programs, policies and legislation.

Among adult victims of rape, physical violence, and/or stalking by an intimate partner, 22% of women and 15% of men first experienced some form of partner violence between 11 and 17 years of age (National Center for Injury Prevention and Control Division of Violence Prevention).

Youth also report concerns that the abuse will be disclosed to their parents and/or Child Protective Services, or that their partners will be notified, thus subjecting them to more abuse.

Physical and sexual abuse increases a teen's risk of becoming violent.

Exposure to violence, either in the home or through media, can heighten risk as well.

The National Institute of Mental Health reports that a genetic link exists to violent behavior because some teens are predisposed to impulsiveness and aggression.

According to the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, brain damage from a head injury places a teen at risk of violence.

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Understanding the risk factors, however, can help adults identify at-risk teens.

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