Dating Violence Types of Abuse

Dating Violence

Pathways serves Americans abroad who become victims of dating violence, also called intimate partner violence, dating abuse, and relationship abuse. People of all ages can become victims of dating violence. According to the National Center for Victims of Crime, dating violence is controlling, abusive, and aggressive behavior in a romantic relationship. It can happen in straight or gay relationships. It can include verbal, emotional, physical, or sexual abuse, or a combination.




Verbal and emotional abuse:

  • calling you names or saying things that make you feel guilty
  • yelling and screaming or threatening to hurt themselves
  • putting you down about how you look, what you say or do
  • acting jealous and disapproving of who you spend time with
  • saying things or doing things that embarrass you in public
  • threatening to end the relationship or hurt you or someone you know
  • spreading rumors or telling lies about you to your friends or other people
  • blaming you for the abuse or denying that it is happening

Physical abuse:

  • any action that physically hurts your body
  • shoving, pinching, scratching, slapping
  • pushing, punching, hitting, kicking
  • strangulation or other life threating abuse

Sexual abuse:

  • unwanted harassment, fondling, touching, kissing
  • forcing you to have sex or perform other sexual acts
  • not letting you use a form of birth control or protection


If you think you are a victim of dating violence abroad, tell someone you trust immediately. Pathways advocates are available 24/7 to help you or a loved one. Please visit our get help now page for more information.


Information adapted from National Center for Victims of Crime and National Center on Domestic and Sexual Violence

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