Rape - Am I At Risk?

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Know the Warning Signs: Knowing the warning signs can help you lower your risk.  Not all people with these traits are rapists.

But many rapists: Don't respect women, think they are being sexy when they are actually being violent, act rude to women in positions of authority, get too close and/or physical with a woman too soon, keep touching a woman after she asks them to stop, think it's normal to be aggressive and violent, demand that things be done on their terms, and abuse alcohol and/or drugs.

Mixed-Up Signals: Sometimes a rape can happen when sexual signals get mixed up. Talk with your partner about sexual feelings before the heat of passion gets in the way. Being clear about sexual limits may keep a sexual situation from getting out of control.

Am I at Risk?

From someone I know: If you know what to look for, it can help you get out of a dangerous situation. You are helping to protect yourself if you know what situations are risky and how to avoid or get out of them, know the traits of rapists and watch for them, are clear about how far you are willing to go sexually with a partner before you are alone together, are careful about using alcohol and other drugs, especially in sexual situation, and have a plan for what to do in a dangerous situation.

From someone I don't know: Your are helping to protect yourself if you check to see who it is when someone knocks at the door, ask for ID when people come to work in your house, don't tell unknown phone callers you're alone, always lock windows and doors, don't accept rides from strangers, vary your route if you walk or run regularly by yourself, walk where there are pople and lights at night, are aware of what's going on around you in unfamiliar situaltions, and have a plan for getting out of an uncomfortable situation right away.

Lower your risk.

Here's a checklist of things you can do to help protect yourself.

When you are with someone: Know what you feel comfortable with sexually, talk with your partner about what you want and don't want and be sure he knows you mean what you say, pay attention if you start to feel uncomfortable and let the person know, and be careful about using alcohool and other durgs, especially in sexual situations.

When you are alone: Be aware! Pay close attention to what's going on around you at all times. Have a plan! Know what you would do in a dangerous situation. Act confident! Most rapists are not attracted to people who look sure of themselves. Trust yourself! Gut-level feelings are usually right. If you sense danger, take safety steps at once. Learn all you can! Contact you local rape crisis center for information about sexual violence. find out what services they offer.


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