Many teens reported being assaulted multiple times, according to the study, based on the CDC's Youth Behavior Risk Surveillance System using questionnaires answered by more than 13,000 high school students."If there is violence once, there is likely to be violence again," Spinks-Franklin says.
"It has to be taken very seriously."Spinks-Franklin say she has seen violence even among relationships between 10- and 11-year-olds."If a parent is concerned that a child is in an unhealthy relationship, they need to address it, but do it in a way that doesn't make the child shut down," she says.
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She praised a high school for holding an assembly about dating violence; it featured a woman who told her story."This study makes it even more important for parents to ask lots of questions and get to know their teen's friends and significant others, and not ignore anything that makes them uncomfortable," says Mc Carthy, a pediatrician at Boston Children's Hospital.
Twenty-one percent of high school girls have been physically or sexually assaulted by someone they dated -- a figure twice as high as previously estimated, a new study shows.
Ten percent of high school boys also report having been physically or sexually assaulted by a dating partner, about the same rate reported in earlier surveys, according to a study led by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention published today in JAMA Pediatrics.
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While it's possible that dating violence could cause thoughts of suicide, it's also possible that children who are depressed are more likely than others to fall into abusive relationships, says Adiaha Spinks-Franklin, a developmental and behavioral pediatrician at Texas Children's Hospital in Houston who was not involved in the new study.