One in five young women have been subjected to intimate relationship abuse.
Young women are at a high risk of intimate relationship abuse, according to Women’s Aid.
Research shows that one in five women, aged 18-25, are subjected to this type of abuse – which includes emotional, physical and sexual abuse by a current or former male partner.
It also found that one in three young women did not tell anyone when they had been abused.
The organisation is now calling for greater awareness to help young people challenge the social norms that justify and enable male violence.
Valentine’s Day marks the beginning of its three-week campaign called Too Into You, which aims to help young women recognise the signs of abuse.
Campaigners are also stressing the importance of proper education around the area of gender-based violence for both boys and girls.
“Recent discussions on men’s violence against women have been focused largely on women’s safety in public spaces and in their communities,” says Sarah Benson, Women’s Aid CEO.
“However, we also need to remember that young women are commonly at risk of male violence not just by strangers, but in their intimate relationships with men.
“Young women in particular are subjected to coercive control including emotional, physical, sexual, and online abuse by intimate partners in relationships including casual and even short term relationships.
“The impact of abuse can be severe, long lasting and life changing for young women.”
Juliana Shiel, Too Into You ambassador and survivor of intimate relationship abuse said:
“When you are abused by a partner it can feel like you are trapped, like you have nowhere to turn. You can second guess yourself and feel like you are going crazy, but this is not your fault.
“The great thing about Too Into You is that it can help you spot early on if your relationship is healthy, so you don’t become trapped in a relationship that is much harder to leave later on.”