Rapists are not always strangers. When someone you know—a date, a boyfriend, or a casual friend—forces you to have sex, it is still rape.
Preventing Date Rape
As A Woman
- Not let alcohol or other drugs decrease your ability to take care of yourself and make decisions.
- Trust your instincts. If you are uncomfortable with a date, end it.
- Check out a first date or blind date with friends. Meet and go to public places. Make sure you have money for a phone call or taxi, if necessary.
- Do not leave a social event with someone you just met or do not know well.
- Do not accept beverages from someone you do not know well and trust. Always watch your drink and never leave it unattended.
As A Man
- Accept a woman’s decision when she says, “no.” Do not see it as a challenge but accept that she has rights and deserves respect.
- Ask yourself how sexual stereotypes affect your attitudes and actions toward women.
- Avoid clouding your judgment and understanding of what another person wants by using alcohol or drugs.
- Realize that forcing a woman to have sex against her will is rape, a violent crime with serious consequences that could haunt you for many years to come.
- Never be drawn into gang rape.
- Seek counseling if you have violent feelings or aggression toward women.
What Are Date Rape Drugs?
Rohyponol and GHB are called the date rape drugs because when they are slipped into someone’s drink, a sexual assault can take place without the victim being able to remember what happened.
Rohypnol works like a tranquilizer. It causes muscle weakness, fatigue, slurred speech, loss of motor coordination and judgment and amnesia that lasts up to 24 hours. It looks like an aspirin pill-small, white and round.
GHB also causes quick sedation. Its effects are drowsiness, nausea, vomiting, headaches, dizziness, and can cause coma and death. Its most common form is a clear liquid although it can also be a grainy white powder.
If Date Rape Happens…
- Get help. Do not isolate yourself, do not feel guilty, and do not try to ignore it. It is a crime and you should report it.
- Get medical attention as soon as possible. Do not shower, wash, change clothes or dispose of anything until the police say it’s okay. You could be destroying valuable evidence.
- Get counseling to deal with emotional trauma. Victim witness advocates can assist you with counseling if you cannot afford it.
- If you think you have been assaulted while under the influence of Rohypnol or GHB seek help immediately. Try not to urinate before providing urine samples and if possible, collect any glasses from which you drank.