Dating Violence

The Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance Survey (YRBS) show that in 2013, one in four (28%) high school students report they were emotionally, verbally, physically, or sexually abused by a dating partner.

According to YRBS data, in 2013:

• 22.7% of students reported being verbally or emotionally harmed one or more times by a dating partner. Females (19.2%) were more likely to report verbal and emotional abuse compared to males (11.7%).

• 10.7% of students reported being forced to do sexual things they did not want to by a dating partner. Females (15.0%) were more likely to report sexual abuse compared to

• 6.9% of students reported being physically hurt on purpose one or more times by a dating partner.

• 21.9% of students were bullied on school property; with the majority (16.8%) being electronically bullied.

"Please realize that these things DO happen. You may think to yourself 'oh that will never be me' and then suddenly you find yourself in a bad relationship, and a scary situation."

- Caity, survivor of a violent dating relationship

"Violence should never be an option in a relationship, and if someone thinks it is, then it's time to get out of that relationship. I just hope the teens of Utah and all of America can be strong enough to know that."

- Wyatt, high school student

If you or someone you love is in a violent relationship, call these FREE hotlines open 24 hours a day/7 days a week.

Utah Domestic Violence Link Line
1-800-897-LINK (5465)

Rape & Sexual Assault Crisis Line

To help teachers and students understand the dynamics of unhealthy dating relationships, the UDOH and Utah Healthy Relationship Task Force have developed a dating violence prevention toolkit.

What is Dating Violence?

Dating violence is verbal, emotional, physical, and/or sexual abuse in a dating relationship. A dating relationship is romantic or intimate in nature and not just a casual relationship.

What are the warning signs that someone is in a violent relationship?


  • Sudden changes in appearance
  • Avoids contact with family and friends
  • Spends all of free time with abuser
  • Cries a lot; moody
  • Is very stressed with physical symptoms
  • Sudden changes in behavior
  • Defends abuser and his/her actions


  • Sudden and drastic mood swings
  • Acts macho or cocky
  • Jealous and controlling
  • Cruelty to animals and/or children
  • History of battering
  • Constantly checking on partner
  • Blames others for their problems

What should you do if you're in a violent dating relationship?

  • Decide that any abuse is too much
  • Tell someone you are being abused
  • Document your injuries
  • Call a local hotline for help
  • Fill out a personalized safety plan
  • Remember that it is NOT your fault you are being abused

How can you help a loved one who is in a violent dating relationship?

  • Learn all you can about abuse
  • Teach your loved one about abuse
  • Document the injuries you see
  • Call a local hotline for more resources
  • Listen to your loved one
  • Be patient!