Your Ad Could Be Here
By October 1, 2011

Teen dating abuse: am I in an abusive relationship?


I have been with my boyfriend for 11 months and I love him very much. He says he loves me too, but I find myself doubting this a lot as he has in the past threatened to hit me. I don’t know if he really means it. He has a very bad temper and had a terrible childhood which I think has affected him quite seriously. The criticism he makes in regards to my hair, clothes finances, etc. are increasing and very hurtful.

When I complain about the things he says to me, he just laughs and says that I’m being too sensitive. Our most recent argument was over something insignificant and he threatened to hit me, shouted and called me names, which hurt me a lot. I don’t understand why he hurts me so much if he loves me. I don’t want it to get to the stage where I feel constantly threatened. We wanted to get engaged soon but now I’m not so sure. He gets angry very easily over small things. I feel like I am losing my identity and often I find myself doing things just to please him. This is my first relationship. I don’t want to lose him as I love him but he hurts me a lot. Please help me!

First of all, you don’t lose men, because you don’t own them.  Boyfriends are not property, they are not slaves, they are not items you put on a shelf and admire. They are human beings with thoughts and minds and rotten behaviors like this fool you are involved with.

Secondly, you are in an emotionally abusive relationship. Whenever we allow others to define us, repeatedly hurtfully criticize us, belittle us, and make us feel small and insignificant, we are allowing ourselves to be verbally and mentally abused. Do not allow your fears of potential loss of something so foul to override your good sense and sense of self-preservation.

This man and this relationship are damaging your spirit and slowly killing your self-esteem. You do recognize that, but you seem to be torn between doing what you need to do to save yourself, and staying with him just because he muttered something vague and unproven about loving you.

Since this is your first relationship, I know this is confusing to you and you aren’t sure how to proceed, if your perceptions are valid, if he truly loves you, IS THIS BEHAVIOR WHAT LOVE IS ALL ABOUT? But you did at least have enough presence of mind to write and ask for advice, so I am going to try to guide you through this.

Sweetie, the guy you are dealing with is a jerk with anger management problems and the potential to become physically abusive. Any time a woman is or feels physically threatened, is afraid to say what she thinks or feels or wants because of what her man MIGHT do to her, is physically assaulted (hit, pinched, slapped, kicked, pushed, choked, arms twisted, snatched around), called names, threatened with violence – that woman is in an abusive relationship. What follows is an outline I prepared for my appearnce on a local radio show last October, which is Domestic Violence Awareness month:


Dating abuse affects 1 in 10 teen couples. It isn’t just hitting – includes yelling, threatening, name-calling, threatening to kill him or herself, obsessive phone calling or paging, and extreme possessiveness.

Between 10-25% of girls between 18-24 will be the victims of rape or attempted rape. In more than half these cases the attacker is a dating partner (date rape).

Boys also experience abuse… being pressured or forced into unwanted sex by girls or older males.

Battering occurs as often if not more so in teen relationships as in adult relationships. According to Santa Clara (California) County’s Domestic Violence Review Team, the majority of female victims of domestic violence-related homicide were killed by current or former partners they had been involved with since adolescence.

Teen Dating Violence Checklist

Are you dating someone who…

  • Is jealous and possessive … won’t let you have friends or nastily criticizes the friends that you do have as being a bad influence?
  • Gets too serious about the relationship too quickly?
  • Has a history of failed relationships and blames the other person for all the problems, accepting no blame?
  • With someone that checks up on you, follows you around, shows up unexpectedly at family or friend’s homes or other places you are known to be?
  • Stubbornly refuses to accept that you have broken up and exhibits stalking behaviors?
  • Tries to control you by being bossy, giving orders, making all the decisions, not listening to your opinions or accepting your decisions?
  • Puts you down in front of other people as stupid, incompetent, “just a woman”?
  • Tells you that you would be nothing without him?
  • Scares you? Makes you worry about reactions to things you say or do? Threatens you? Uses or owns weapons and talks about using them for violence?
  • Is violent? Has a history of grabbing, fighting, losing temper quickly, brags about mistreating other women, small animals or people?
  • Is physically threatening by punching, grabbing, slapping, shoving, twisting arms, pinching, boxing in corners, choking, locking in cars or rooms, etc.
  • Pressures you relentlessly for sex using guilt tripping, threats of leaving? Or is too forceful or scary about sex when you do have it?
  • Makes your family or friends uneasy and concerned for your safety?

If you answered “yes” to any of the questions above, you could be the victim of dating abuse.

Don’t let a few months turn into a few years. Either get rid of him or demand that he stop immediately, with the threat that if he does it again he is history. For many, the man’s behavior begins with verbal abuse, then escalates to physical attacks. Should he EVER touch you, cut him lose on the spot and don’t look back.

Facebook Twitter Email Pinterest Reddit Stumbleupon Tumblr Digg


Relationship and dating advice columnist of Ask HeartBeat! Has enjoyed dishing out insightful yet hilariously funny advice, tersely worded reality checks and "let me slap you upside the head" wake up calls to men and women around the globe since 1991.

More Posts - Website

Follow Me:
TwitterFacebookPinterestGoogle PlusYouTube

Posted in: Teen Dating FAQs

About the Author:

Relationship and dating advice columnist of Ask HeartBeat! Has enjoyed dishing out insightful yet hilariously funny advice, tersely worded reality checks and "let me slap you upside the head" wake up calls to men and women around the globe since 1991.

Comments are closed.

Social links powered by Ecreative Internet Marketing