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Don’t confuse group dating with double-dating or triple-dating.While there may be the occasional romantic twosome among the members, the majority are unattached.Abusers can be male or female, and experts are seeing these patterns of behavior in younger and younger students as pre-teens and elementary students engage in dating relationships before developing healthy relationship skills and boundaries.Abuse occurs in-person as well as through cyberbullying and cyber-control.The following percentages of dating teens reported experiencing forms of abuse: An NIJ-funded longitudinal study of 1,162 students in the Midwest examined the prevalence of several kinds of abuse that male and female middle and high school students experienced and perpetrated in teen dating relationships. About one-third of girls and boys (35 percent and 36 percent, respectively) reported experiencing physical violence in a teen dating relationship. Verbal emotional abuse was the most common form of abuse in teen dating relationships for both girls and boys: 73 percent of girls and 66 percent of boys reported experiencing at least one instance of verbal abuse in a dating relationship in high school. More girls reported perpetrating physical dating violence than boys (34 percent vs. In addition, 64 percent of girls and 45 percent of boys reported perpetrating verbal emotional abuse toward a dating partner. Nearly one in four girls and one in seven boys reported being victims of sexual coercion in a teen dating relationship. NIJ-funded research has also examined the prevalence of dating violence among a national sample of Latino adolescents.
But unfortunately, teen dating violence is reality for 1.5 million high school students across the US every year who experience some form of dating violence from a boyfriend or girlfriend.If anything, youngsters in the group spend as much time interacting with their same-sex friends as they do with members of the opposite sex. Ron Eagar, a pediatrician at Denver Health Medical Center, views group dating as a healthy way for adolescents to ease into the dating pool rather than dive in.“The number-one benefit is safety,” says the father of two grown children.The recent trend among early adolescents is for boys and girls to socialize as part of a group.They march off en masse to the mall or to the movies, or join a gang tossing a Frisbee on the beach.