Abuse can happen in both dating relationships and friendships.Emotional abuse (stuff like teasing, bullying, and humiliating others) can be difficult to recognize because it doesn't leave any visible scars.Threats, intimidation, putdowns, and betrayal are all harmful forms of emotional abuse that can really hurt — not just during the time it's happening, but long afterward, too. It's never right to be forced into any type of sexual experience that you don't want.
But Sarah's friends became concerned when her behavior started to change.
She lost interest in the things she once enjoyed, like swim meets and going to the mall. When her friends asked if she was having trouble with Brian, she told them nothing was wrong.
Healthy relationships involve respect, trust, and consideration for the other person. In fact, 1 in 11 high school students report being physically hurt by a date.
When Brian and Sarah began dating, her friends were envious.
Brian was smart, sensitive, funny, athletic, and good-looking. For the first couple of months, Sarah seemed happy.
She started to miss her friends and family, though, because she was spending more time with Brian and less time with everyone else.
That seemed easier than dealing with Brian's endless questions.
People in these relationships sometimes mistake the abuse for intense feelings of caring or concern. Think of a friend whose boyfriend or girlfriend is very jealous: Maybe it seems like your friend's partner really cares.
But actually, excessive jealousy and controlling behavior are not signs of affection at all.