College students experiencing dating abuse face unique obstacles when seeking help:
Living away from home can make students feel trapped in their campus community and social peer groups.
They might be more fearful of reporting because they don’t want to get in trouble for substance use. For instance, they may be reluctant to report a sexual assault if they were drunk when it happened.
Victims may live in the same residence hall as their abuser, which can put them more at risk for harassment and stalking.
Campus policies and procedures about dating abuse may be unclear.
Common stalking behaviors, which can occur during the relationship or after it’s over:
Following you, waiting, showing up, or driving by wherever you are, such as your home, school, or job.
Constantly calling (including hang-ups), texting, leaving voicemails.
Sending you unwanted letters, cards, e-mails, or gifts.
Monitoring your phone calls or computer use.
Some stalking behavior may not seem dangerous to an outsider, but stalking is serious and should be treated that way. If you are being stalked, keep a record of what is happening so that you’ll have it as evidence if you decide to get help from the police or court.
For more information on stalking, including New York State’s stalking laws, visit:
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The New York State Office for the Prevention of Domestic Violence recommends that all schools develop a dating violence policy, which can help them to:
- Build victim safety and offender accountability into the school’s response.
- Provide a consistent school response to dating abuse.
- Establish clear roles and responsibilities for school staff.
- Provide help to victims.
Break the Cycle is a national organization that collaborated with four local organizations to develop the DC Safe Schools Model Policy, which can be used as a tool by schools seeking to develop their own policies:
- Break the Cycle: Safe Schools Model Policy: A Comprehensive Approach to Addressing Dating Violence and Sexual Violence in District of Columbia Schools
- A Resource Manual for School Employees
Initiatives and Curriculums
- NYSCADV recommended curricula and activity books
- Start Strong
- Dating Matters
- That’s Not Cool
- Safe Dates
- Shifting Boundaries