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For young couples, violence can harm both sides

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FRIDAY, March 7, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Teens and young adults involved in relationship violence are more likely to suffer depression, a new study indicates.

The Bowling Green State University sociologists found that both males and females who committed or were victims of relationship violence had more symptoms of depression.

It's clear why such violence can harm the mental health of victims, the researchers said, but this study showed that it also has a damaging effect on those who commit the violence.

The study authors said people who commit relationship violence know they are viewed negatively.

The researchers also said the mental harm caused by relationship violence can damage young people's self-worth and self-confidence, making it more difficult for them to make a smooth transition into adulthood.

This means the impact of any kind of relationship violence among teens and young adults may be long term and interfere with things such as schooling, getting a good job, and starting and managing a family.

To come to this conclusion, the researchers analyzed data from young people who were first interviewed at ages 12 to 19, again one year later and then every two years after that. During the last interview, the participants were aged 17 to 24.

The study was published in the March issue of the Journal of Health and Social Behavior.

More information

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has more about teen dating violence.

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