In February, approaching love in all forms seems magical. It is the season to celebrate the love you hold for your significant others, friends, and family. Love and relationships can bring happiness to even the darkest days of winter, and that is worthy of a celebration. This celebration must never come at the cost of engaging in genuine, healthy, and fulfilling relationships.
Intimate Partner Violence on College Campuses
Intimate partner violence (IPV) is any type of violence - physical, sexual, verbal, or psychological - used on or against a current or former significant other. Often referred to as domestic abuse, IPV is a larger problem on campus than many would expect. IPV is especially dangerous on campus because 70% of victims do not realize they are in an abusive relationship, and those who do realize often do not report their abuse. College aged women experience the highest rates of current IPV at 21%. Furthermore, 1 in 3 women aged 16-24 have encountered IPV at some point in their lives. This is not just an issue for women - men also experience domestic abuse and need to be aware of the dangers of IPV.
Young people experience IPV at higher rates for many reasons that everyone should be aware of. One reason is that there is a general lack of experience within relationships that creates vulnerability. This vulnerability can be easily exploited. Another reason is that young people often have very tight-knit social circles. This creates difficulty in leaving an unhealthy relationship and can contribute toward abuses. Social media presence is also a contributor towards young people’s likelihood to stay in unhealthy relationships. Lastly, past abuse is one of the strongest indicators towards experiencing abuse in current and future relationships. It is important for everyone to be aware of some of the reasons young people remain vulnerable to IPV so you can look out for the signs of abuse in your own relationships as well look out for friends and family who may be vulnerable.
How to Spot the Signs of Intimate Partner Violence
The signs of IPV can be hard to spot, especially when individuals are engaging in some of their first serious, long-term relationships. There are many signs that a relationship may be unhealthy and abusive. A partner may be abusive if they are controlling of your:
- Who you see or talk to
- Where you go
- What you do
Additionally, a partner who is demeaning, violent or threatens violences towards you, your friends, your family, or your pets may be abusive. A partner who pressures or coerces you into doing something you do not want to do, whether it be drugs, sex, etc. is showing signs of abuse. IPV does not have to meet all of these criteria in order to be real. If you are experiencing any of the above abuses there are plenty of resources on campus that can help you.
Sexual Assault Prevention and Awareness Center: (734) 764-7771
Sexual Assault Prevention and Awareness Center: (734) 936-3333 ***
Counseling and Psychological Services: (734) 764-8312 ***
Division of Public Safety and Security: (734) 763-1131
Common Ground: 1-800-231-1127 ***
Safehouse Center: (734) 995-5444 ***
In the case of an emergency, call 911
***Numbers accessible 24-hours a day
The links provided below with provide more information regarding domestic abuse and IPV:
Keeping you informed,