Rape | What to do in a Risky Situation | In Case of a Rape | How to Help a Friend | Domestic Violence | Dating Violence | Psychological Services
Sexual Assault/Rape
Myth: Rape is just unwanted sex and isn't really a violent crime.
Fact: Rape is more than just unwanted sex. Rape is an act of violence because the rapist uses force as a motive for power and control. One out of every eight adult women has been a victim of forcible rape. (National Victim Center and Crime Victims Research and Treatment Center, 2014).
Rape is not just an act committed in a dark alley by an unknown assailant. The truth is that most rapes occur in the victim's home. About 60 percent of victims who report their rape know their assailants.
It is possible, however, to be aware without being afraid. Thinking and talking about the different types of sexual assault, and what you might do if you ever find yourself in a bad situation, can increase your chances of avoiding rape.
  1. Always walk briskly; look alert and confident, avoid carrying objects requiring use of both arms.
  2. Stay away from isolated areas, day or night.
  3. Never walk alone when it is dark.
  4. If you are being followed, get away fast, change directions, and walk or run to a crowded area.
  5. Lock all doors to your car and residence at all times.
  6. Before you drive home, call your roommate, family or a friend so they will expect you and be aware If you are excessively late.
  7. Encourage group activities in early stages of a relationship.
  8. Take a self-defense class.
  9. Be aware of legislation that concerns your gender and contact legislators to express your views.
Return to Top
Ways to Prevent Sexual Violence - FOR WOMEN
  1. Be aware of your surroundings.
    There is a higher chance of avoiding sexual assault just by being awareof what and who is around you. Being cautious and alert can only be to your benefit.
  2. Know your sexual desires and limits.
    Believe in your right to set those limits
  3. Communicate your limits as clearly as possible.
    If someone starts to offend you, tell him early and firmly. Being polite is O.K. as long as you are firm and assertive. Say "no" when you mean "no" and be prepared to repeat it.
  4. Dress comfortably.
    Dress as you please. However, non-restrictive clothing could be an advantage. We don't want to lead anyone to think that when a woman dresses provocatively she is giving permission to be sexually violated. Nobody asks to be sexually violated or raped, but to be aware that if someone ignores your limits and assertiveness, you want to be able to run and fight back if needed. Therefore, tight clothing and high heels could be a disadvantage.
  5. Avoid excessive us of alcohol and drugs.
    Alcohol and drugs interfere with clear thinking and effective communication.
*If you are walking alone, try to have a whistle with you. If you find yourself in danger, blow the whistle to attract attention for help. Another item that may help you if in danger is chemical mace, to spray in attackers eyes. Using items such as keys, pencils, pens, or books can also be used to defend yourself against an attacker.
Return to Top
Ways to Prevent Sexual Violence - FOR MEN
  1. Know your sexual desires and limits, communicate them clearly.
    Be aware of social pressures. There is nothing wrong with not scoring.
  2. Being turned down when you ask for sex is not a rejection of you personally.
    Women who say "No" to sex are not rejecting the person; they are expressing their desire to not participate in a single act. Your desiresmay be beyond your control but your actions are within your control.
  3. Accept the woman's decision.
    "No" means "No." Don't read other meanings into the answer. Don't continue after "No." Stop.
  4. Do not assume that just because a woman dresses in a sexy manner and flirts that she wants to have sexual intercourse.
  5. Do not assume that previous permission for sexual contact applies to the current situation.
Return to Top
What To Do in a Risky Situation
  • Stay calm, consider your options and how safe it would be to resist.
  • Say "NO" strongly. Do not smile; do not act polite or friendly.
  • Say something like "Stop it. This is Rape!" This might shock the rapist into stopping.
  • If the rapist is unarmed, fight back physically, shout "NO!" and run away as soon as possible.
  • If the rapist is armed, try to talk him out of continuing the assault, or try passive resistance (vomit, urinate, pretend to faint).

Return to Top
What to do in Case of a Rape
  • Get to a safe place.
  • Call a friend or family member to be with you.
  • Breathe deeply and remind yourself that you are of value, and that what has happened is wrong and in no way your fault.
  • Call the police. A crime has been committed.
  • Do not bathe, douche or change clothes.
    You may be destroying legal evidence, regardless of whether you pursue legal action or not.
  • Go to a hospital emergency department for medical care. This can be done without police intervention, if that is your choice.
  • Write down as much as you can remember about the circumstance of the assault and the identity of your assailant.
  • Seek the counseling and legal assistance from a rape treatment center. The counselor there can help you deal with the consequences of an assault.
Reporting the assault is a way of regaining your sense of personal power and control. It enables you to actively protest the violent crime that has been committed against you.
Reporting and prosecuting the assailant are essential in establishing new norms that this behavior is NOT okay. Taking legal steps helps prevent rape and protect other potential victims.
Return to Top
How to Help a Friend
  • Believe your friend. A few people are going to act as if you friend has lied or done something wrong. She/he will need your support.
  • Listen carefully and do not laugh. People often laugh if they are embarrassed or nervous.
  • Help your friend to report the rape to someone who can help - a counselor, school nurse, parent, child protective service worker, teacher, or police officer.
  • Let your friend know it is not her/his fault. People who have been touched inappropriately often feel that they have done something wrong.
  • Be confidential and protect your friend's privacy. Talk to a trusted adult if this situation is bothering you.
  • Be verbal in letting your friend know that you care and that you support her/him.

Emergency contraception available at the on-campus
Health Center.
Health Services are available to current Foothill students and to Foothill faculty & staff only. Please bring your OwlCard with a current quarter sticker or a faculty/staff ID card. Thanks!
Student Health 101
Health 101 Logo
Health Services offers Foothill Students FREE access to Student Health 101.
Student Health 101 is an online magazine covering a variety of college health and wellness related topics including stress, sleep, nutrition, healthy relationships, sexual health, academics, physical fitness, and more!
Click for Facebook Page