Sexual Assault Program
Non-stranger rape is when someone you know forces you to have sexual intercourse against
your will -- whether you are passed out, too drunk to refuse, too scared to argue, or for some
other reason do not give consent.
Non-stranger rape is one of the most common types sexual assault -- a spectrum of unlawful,
sexually violent behaviors. Other forms of sexual assault besides forced sexual intercourse
include unwanted touching of another person's buttocks, breasts, penis, or vagina; forced
penetration of genital or anal opening with an object; or unwanted sexual comments, jokes, and
Although non-stranger rape is common, it is the least understood. The rapist in this case
is not the weird, dirty stranger who jumps out from behind a building in a dark alley. Most of
the time, it is your classmate, friend, neighbor, co-worker, boyfriend, relative, or girlfriend.
Rape can happen to anyone. Victims can be male or female, young or old, attractive or not, rich or
poor -- whether straight, gay, lesbian, or bisexual.
The following suggestions may help you to protect yourself. If you get a funny feeling about a
person, a situation, or a touch, try to get to a safe place as soon as possible.
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- Paying half the cost will alleviate your date/acquaintance from thinking you "owe"
something in return.
- When dating or meeting someone new, go in a group a few times. Get to know the
person before being alone with him or her.
- Tell someone where you are going and what time you will be home. Call if your plans
- Be clear with your date about the kind of touches you want and don't want. Give the
message that "no" means "NO", not "try harder for a yes."
- Have an arrangement with a friend whom you may call day or night for help.
- Know that giving someone a ride, or accepting a ride (whether you know
them or not) is a risk. A decision to be sexual should be
agreed upon by both of you. Beware of words that are often
used by others to try to force you to engage in unwanted
"If you don't have sex with me, I'll break up with you."
"If you really loved me, you would."
"If you don't, I'll have to find someone who will."
Societal Myths About Non-Stranger Rape
Society too often blames the victim for the assault. This is
unfair. The responsibility of the assault should rest on the
offender. Some of the most common myths include:
"You wouldn't have been raped if you hadn't been drinking."
Some people serve dates double shots of alcohol in their beverages to make them more vulnerable.
Drinking does not give someone the right to assault you. To be safe, know your drinking limits
and what you are drinking.
"If you wouldn't have accepted a ride, this wouldn't have happened to you."
Attackers are often people you know and trust. Accepting a ride does not give the attacker
permission to assault you, nor does it obligate you to have sexual relations with him/her.
"What do you expect will happen when you wear that kind
It is important to realize that people dress in clothing that makes them feel comfortable. Rape
can happen to anyone no matter what you are wearing.
"You asked for it. You've been leading him/her on and teasing."
Flirting is a natural part of dating. Know your sexual boundaries, how far you want to go, and
avoid being talked into touches you don't want.
"If your date spends a lot of money on you, you "owe" something in return.
Dating is not a business deal nor is sex something you pay for. A decision to have sex should
be a decision made together.
These myths are simply not valid. The victim should never
be held responsible for an offender's actions.