Dating violence in college

Often, victims of domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking feel embarrassed, guilty, or fear retaliation or possible humiliation. Know that law enforcement and the College can guide you to professional counseling and other behavioral health resources that can help you deal with these emotions.

Please also keep in mind that reporting to the police is not the same thing as prosecution. If you decide not to notify law enforcement, please secure medical attention and contact any of the victim support resources listed in this guide.

Even so, “schools are totally lost on how to respond to violence when it occurs in the context of a dating relationship,” said Dana Bolger, co-founder of Know Your IX, an activist group that has lobbied for dating violence to be taken seriously on campuses.

That may be because college dating violence victims are often dismissed as being young and inexperienced, Bolger said.

When people think of domestic violence, they think of marriage and children, not first-time relationships built over late-night fries in the cafeteria.“Students may live in a different dorm than their perpetrator,” she said, “but that doesn’t mean their lives and education aren’t threatened.” During the University of Chicago mediation, Ortiz broke down in tears as the dean lectured her ex for hurting her feelings.

He ignored her and pressured her for months, she said, and often tried to take advantage of her when she was drunk or sleeping.

Sometimes, Ortiz said, she would wake up to him touching her while she had been unconscious.

The two dated from fall 2011 into the following spring, when Ortiz told a friend that her boyfriend touched her and made her touch him when she didn’t want to. But it was also the only relationship Ortiz had ever known.

It wasn’t until he broke up with her that summer that Ortiz confided in a mentor on campus.

Universities all over the country are under fire for how they handle sexual assault under Title IX, the federal law that prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in any federally funded education program.

The 1972 law was best known for its impact on high school and college athletics until 2011, when the Education Department sent a “Dear Colleague” letter to schools reminding them that they needed to be investigating sexual violence cases under Title IX, too.

Note that for Clery purposes, an incident fitting the description of sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence or stalking is considered a crime regardless of whether the incident qualifies as a crime in the local jurisdiction. Certain campus officials have the qualification of "Campus Security Authority" ("CSA") under federal guidelines, and are trained in taking reports of crime.

Sexual assault includes any sexual act directed against another person, forcibly and/or against that person's will, or not forcibly or against the person's will where the victim is incapable of giving consent, including forcible rape, forcible sodomy, sexual assault with an object and forcible fondling. These include but are not limited to: academic club advisors, Athletics Department coaches and managers, Student Services managers, Judicial Affairs officers, Human Resources representatives, and College administrators (e.g. While we strongly encourage you to make a report with Campus Safety, you may make a report of sexual misconduct to any Campus Security Authority, for example, if you feel uncomfortable talking with a Campus Safety officer.

She suggested Ortiz speak to the dean of students, who offered to set up an informal mediation between Ortiz and her ex.

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