Gutierrez agrees that it is more common for teens to get involved in dating violence if there is family history modeling that type of behavior. She believes mental health issues or past trauma in the family can predispose people to become a victim or abuser, but it varies in every situation.
Aime Hutton, a previous victim of dating violence and a Canadian ambassador for the Freedom & Empowerment Teen Campaign, said in an email that abusers might learn their behaviors and mindset from parents.
“Some people living with a mental illness may be searching for love, and since the abuser is showing them love (even if they are being hurt) they think this is what love is supposed to be like,” she added.
Part 1 of the series: National Teen Dating Violence Awareness and Prevention Month: Part 1
Part 3 of the series: Ending The Struggle With Teen Dating Violence: Part 3
Waterman, Elizabeth. Email interview. Feb. 4, 2013.
Raja, Sheela. Email interview. Feb. 4, 2013.
Gutierrez, Christine. Email interview. Feb. 4, 2013.
Tanimura Winquist, Joy. Email interview. Feb. 4, 2013.
Carmichael, Kristin. Email interview. Feb. 6, 2013.
Cleary, Audrey. Email interview. Feb. 5, 2013.
Hutton, Aime. Email interview. Feb. 5, 2013.
Reviewed February 7, 2013
by Michele Blacksberg RN
Edited by Jody Smith