Date rape

What Is Date Rape?

For many people ‘rape’ is associated with a stranger in an alley way or a person jumping out of the bushes. This can happen, but most survivors are raped by people who are known to them. This is known as ‘acquaintance rape’. If the person known to you is a date or friend it is called date rape.

Date rape is forced, unwanted sex with a person that you know. It is a violation of your body and your trust. It is an act of violence. It can be with someone that you have just met, dated a few times, or even someone you are in a stable relationship with. Force may involve threats or tone of voice as well as physical force or weapons. Date rape is sex without consent and is against the law.

How does it normally occur?

Date rapes often occur when two people are alone. However there may be other people nearby, such as at a party.
Alcohol and drugs often play a part in date rape. Many people feel guilty about drinking too much or taking too many drugs at the time of the rape. It is important to know that it is still rape no matter how much alcohol or drugs are consumed.
Date rape often occurs when ‘seduction’ fails and one person chooses to force sex on the other person anyway.
Date rapists are usually known and trusted by the survivor. Because of this, survivors often have conflicting feelings of  anger, self-doubt and self-blame. Regardless of whether there are drugs or alcohol involved, or whether there has been sexual contact in the past, it is important to remember that the vicitm is never to blame for the rape.

Keeping Safe. Things you can do…

  • Have your own transport, if possible, or a taxi fare.
  • If you are unsure of an acquaintance, go with a group or on a double date.
  • If you are going out in a group, make a safety plan with other members of the group. Include, what to do if someone gets separated from the group.Women have been socialised to be polite. Do not do anything you do not want to do just to avoid a scene.
  • Listen to your instinct. If you feel uncomfortable with anything, be loud, get help, leave if you can.
  • Communicate clearly your sexual limits. You have the right to negotiate sex if it is what you want. On the other hand – it is your body and no one has the right to force you to do anything you do not want to do.
  • Be aware that excessive use of alcohol and drugs are often related to date rape.

If you have been date raped there are several options available to you. Please go to our Get Help page for more information. Or contact your nearest sexual assault service for support.