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Date Rape: Dealing with the Aftermath

***This article will discuss difficult topics about sexual assault.  If you or a loved one has questions or needs help, please contact the National Sexual Assault Hotline at 1-800-799-SAFE immediately***

Sexual assault is damaging in many ways, not just physically. The emotional and psychological trauma that occurs after a woman has been raped can be life-changing and leave permanent scars on her soul. There are many types of sexual assault, and each can be debilitating. Date rape can be defined as a forced sexual encounter with someone with whom the victim was flirting or someone they were dating. Sometimes it is physical force, but other times they force you into doing something you don’t want to do using coercion or slipping you drugs.

Was it Rape?

If you are forced to have sex with someone when you don’t want to, that is rape. If you are drunk, high, or otherwise incoherent, you have no ability to consent to sex. If someone has sex with you when you are in that condition, that is also rape. If someone gives you drugs (knowingly or unknowingly) and proceeds to have sex with you, that is rape. If you say no, and they don’t listen, that is rape. One in five women will be a victim of rape in their lifetime here in the United States. Less than 12 percent of all rapists will ever serve time in prison. These statistics need to change.

What now?

If you or someone you know has been a victim of date rape, there are things you need to do:

  1. If it was recent, the victim needs to go to a hospital and have a rape kit done right away. Don’t wash, shower, douche, or change clothes. There may be evidence.
  2. Confide in a trusted friend or loved one. No one should go through this alone.
  3. Report the rape to the police. The police will then review the results of your rape kit and will discuss potential options with you.  
  4. Call the National Sexual Assault Hotline a 1-800-799-SAFE.
  5. Get yourself enrolled in therapy or counseling to minimize emotional trauma and long-term effects.

Over 70 percent of rape victims experience some form of PTSD (post-traumatic stress syndrome disorder), so even if you feel “ok,” make yourself a priority and get the help you need. It was not your fault, and no one deserves to be raped.

Women between the ages of 18-65 are welcome to join our community and sisterhood at Villa Tranquil Recovery. Come spend time in our beautiful home located in Jupiter Farms, Florida after your primary care treatment program. For information, call:  (561) 294-0427