What You Should Know About Cyber-Dating and Domestic Violence
Just about everyone recognizes the tremendous influence that social media has on today’s society. However, technology also presents other opportunities. There are a number of computer sites that are designed to promote cyber-dating. Unfortunately, in some cases, this could start a cycle of domestic violence.
Here’s what you should know. The problem is not just one that is problematic among those of a legal age. Cyber-dating is prevalent among teens. In fact, it seems to be a fad and something that could pose concerns.
For starters, you could notice changes in your son or daughter’s demeanor and not understand why. All things considered, your instincts might recognize the correlation between rapid clicking of thumbs on an electronic device to sudden mood changes.
Cyber-Dating, Teens and Domestic Violence
A few years ago, the Journal of Youth and Adolescence presented the results of a study regarding teens and their use of technology in dating relationships. The research examined the online behavior and compared it with other types of abuse.
Before we go further, you should know that cyber harassment may be considered a predicate act of domestic violence here in New Jersey. Furthermore, under the New Jersey statutes, protection for domestic violence victims is not just available to family members or married couples. Either party to a dating relationship may find it necessary to seek out a restraining order.
Let’s get back to the study on teens and cyber dating. The bottom line is that young people are familiar with the ins and outs of technology. As a result, they can both misuse it to harm others. Not surprisingly, cyber harassment is the number one issue. This can also include stalking.
According to this particular study, females were more likely to bring on non-sexual cyber-dating abuse. However, victims of cyber sexual abuse had extraordinary issues with sexual coercion. Alarmingly, the research showed that “perpetrators of sexual cyber-dating abuse were 17 times more likely to have also perpetrated sexual coercion than non-perpetrators.”
One last thing. Another research study estimates that over forty percent of teens involved in cyber-dating relationships claimed they were victims of abuse. In addition to concerns about harassment or stalking, some felt threatened or controlled.
Online Sites Warn about Abuse
In today’s technology age, people of all ages are turning to online dating sites to meet prospective love interests. Rather than discourage the concept, the National Domestic Violence Hotline provides users with safety tips. At the very least, meeting someone offline should be done in a public place.
One of the most popular forms of social media is Facebook. Although Facebook is not really a dating site, many use it to make new acquaintances. To its credit, Facebook has partnered with the National Network to End Domestic Violence.
Why is this important? First, privacy and safety often go hand in hand. Domestic violence victims can actually download a publication with directions to help make their online experience a safe one. Instagram and Twitter are also involved in the campaign to protect victims of domestic violence.
What Can You Do
Cyber-dating and domestic violence are a reality. If you are the parent of a child who is experiencing this type of issue, you may feel helpless. Likewise, adults in similar relationships may not know how to address the issue.
At the Law Offices of Anthony Carbone, we will take the time to discuss your concerns and provide you with experienced legal advice. There is no charge for our first meeting. Call us to see how we can help you!