Banner Health Services  

Teens and dating violence

Sue Jantzen is manager of Clinical Services at Banner Behavioral Health Hospital-Scottsdale

Question: What is teen-dating violence?


Teen dating violence is a romantic relationship that centers on aggressive, abusive and controlling behavior.

Question: What warning signs indicate teen-dating violence?


Telling their partner what to wear, who to hang out with and what to do. It can also involve:

  • Jealousy
  • Name calling
  • Continuously putting their partner down
  • Shoving, punching, pinching, slapping, kicking, hair pulling, choking
  • Continuously calling or phone texting
  • Threatening partner if they don't do what they want
  • Unwanted touching/kissing
  • Forcing partner to have sex or other sexual behaviors

Question: What do you do if you are in a teen-dating violence situation?


  • Talk to a trusted person. (Parent, friend, teacher, coach, nurse or school counselor)
  • Set firm limits and consequences for your partner about any abusive or controlling behavior.
  • Be clear about what behaviors are acceptable and which behaviors are not.
  • Encourage your partner to get help.
  • Don't except any excuse from your partner. (Making excuses and blaming are common characteristics of an abuser)
  • Remember violent behavior is a choice.
  • Realize it is not your fault.

Nothing that you say or do gives anyone the right to hurt you.

Question: What are safe teen-dating tips?


  • Go out in a group or with other couples, especially if you do not know your partner very well.
  • Let friends and family know where you are going and when you are expecting to be back.
  • Carry money or calling card for transportation or if you need help.
  • Carry a cell phone.
  • Remember…you cannot change your partner; you can only take care of your own safety.

Question: Where can I go for additional help or treatment?

Answer: Call Arizona Coalition Against Domestic Violence at (602) 248-8336.

Page Last Modified: 03/03/2014
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