If one accepts the argument of dating-marital violence equivalence, does this imply that dating is like marriage?
Laner and Thompson offer a number of common characteristics of both marital and serious dating relationships in contrast to other dyads: (1) a greater degree of mutual interaction in terms of time spent together, range of activities in which they are engaged, and higher levels of involvement; (2) a greater exchange of personal information; (3) a greater presumed right to influence the partner; and (4) a greater likelihood of conflict due to the need to negotiate roles and responsibilities and to cope with environmental stressors.
The third issue concentrates on the factors that place an individual at risk of sustaining or inflicting violence in a dating relationship.For the present purposes, violence is defined as the use or threat of physical force or restraint carried out with the intent of causing pain or injury to another.Three points should be raised about this definition. Although psychological strategies are the primary means of controlling another person, little work has focused on operationalizing this construct within the dating context.Carlson defined dating violence as "violence in unmarried couples who are romantically involved", while Thompson conceived of courtship violence as "any acts and/or threat of acts that physically and/or verbally abuse another person" and that occur during "any social interaction related to the dating and/or mate selection process".
One of the difficulties with these definitions is that the terms "dating" and "courtship" are not adequately defined and seem to apply to a broad range of persons and social activities.For example, Makepeace saw dating violence as a mediating stage between the experiencing of violence in one's family of origin and in one's family of procreation, a training ground hypothesis.