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Violence in a Relationship

In March of 2009, Mental Health America of Jackson County presented an in-service workshop to the faculty at Seymour Senior High School on Suicide Prevention. In our surveys from the teachers, several of them asked for information on dating and violence which prompts me to give the public some information about dating and how it can be an abusive relationship.

Dating and being in a relationship feels good when people treat each other with respect, but dating relationships can become abusive. Abuse can take many forms, including physical abuse such as hitting, sexual abuse such as forcing someone to have sex, emotional abuse such as putting the person down or trying to control the person's actions. Any abuse is bad and there is no such thing as "deserving it" or "asking for it." Both women and men can be the victims of violent relationships.

Here are some signs of recognizing an abusive relationship:
Does your partner:
  • act jealous or possessive?
  • try to keep you from having other friends ?
  • tell you what you can say and can't wear ?
  • put you down or say things to purposefully hurt your feelings ?
  • pressure you for sex ?
  • pressure you to use alcohol or other drugs?
  • make you call and check in constantly or check to see who called you?
  • hit, push, kick or otherwise physically hurt you?

If your partner does any of these things you may be in an abusive relationship. Jealousy does not equal love. It may feel good to know someone cares enough about you to feel jealous, but it is not a sign of love. When a person is jealous all the time or tries to control your behavior because of jealousy, then there is a problem.

If you are hurting someone or if you are afraid that you might, you can get help to stop. Most people do not want to hurt others, especially the people they love. Talk to someone you trust, like a relative, friend or doctor. Ask them to help you find counseling. If you become violent when you use alcohol or other drugs, get help for substance abuse, too.

Everyone deserves healthy relationships. Everyone deserves to be loved and cared about without being hurt. For more information about any mental condition, check out or new website at

Contact Us

Laura Stahl
P.O. Box 51
Seymour, IN 47274
Phone: (812) 522-3480
Fax: (812) 524-8176