Many people wonder how dating abuse and violence begins and there is no definite answer, but it most commonly begins with the wearing down of the victim’s self-esteem.  Abusers do this because it gives them authority and power over the other person.  “Abusers may feel insecure or uncertain about themselves or their lives.  Or they may feel like they don’t have much control over anything.  So they use power and control in their relationships to make themselves feel better.”2 Once the victim’s self-esteem is broken down, (s)he becomes vulnerable to all forms of abuse.  There are countless resources now available to public that will equip them to educate not only themselves, but also the youth they come in contact with.  Knowledge is power and power can end this horrible cycle of violence.

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