Boys involved in unhealthy relationships reported more marijuana use, suicidal thoughts and antisocial behaviors — damaging property and theft, for example — than boys who did not experience aggressive dating relationships.“Unhealthy relationship experiences are associated with poor health and well-being,” says Exner-Cortens.
Her terms "the battering cycle" and "battered woman syndrome" has since been largely eclipsed by "cycle of abuse" and "battered person syndrome," respectively, for many reasons: to maintain objectivity; because the cycle of abuse doesn't always lead to physical abuse; because symptoms of the syndrome have been observed in men and women, and are not confined to marriage and dating.
Similarly, Dutton (1994) writes, "The prevalence of violence in homosexual relationships, which also appear to go through abuse cycles is hard to explain in terms of men dominating women." The cycle of abuse concept is widely used in domestic violence programs, particularly in the United States.
The perpetrator may begin to feel remorse, guilty feelings, or fear that their partner will leave or call the police.
The victim feels pain, fear, humiliation, disrespect, confusion, and may mistakenly feel responsible.
There is also evidence that adolescents who experience violence in early relationships are more vulnerable to being abused again, and indeed the latest study on the issue published in the journal Pediatrics shows that teens who experienced aggression from a romantic partner between the ages of 12 and 18 were up to three times as likely to be revictimized in relationships as young adults.
(MORE: How Teen Rejection Can Lead to Chronic Disease Later in Life) Researchers from Cornell University tracked nearly 6,000 kids between the ages of 12 and 18 who were in heterosexual relationships, asking them about their experiences with dating violence.
To prevent violence, the victim may try to reduce the tension by becoming compliant and nurturing.
Or, to get the abuse over with, prepare for the violence or lessen the degree of injury, the victim may provoke the batterer.
Yet, note the authors, “psychological aggression in teen dating relationships is an understudied phenomenon.” “When early dating experiences are unhealthy, it may negatively affect teens’ view of what a healthy dating relationship should look like,” says lead author Deinera Exner-Cortens, a doctoral student in the Department of Human Development at Cornell University.
Girls who experienced dating violence were more apt to turn to binge drinking and smoking and have suicidal thoughts as young adults compared with their peers who had not been in aggressive relationships.
Characterized by affection, apology, or, alternatively, ignoring the incident, this phase marks an apparent end of violence, with assurances that it will never happen again, or that the abuser will do his or her best to change.