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Dating Safety: Reducing the Risk of Date Rape
Common Traits of Date Rapists
- Youth (lack of experience with intimate relationships)
- Drug or alcohol abuse
- Previous victim of sexual assault
- Accepting gender-based stereotypes, such as men dominate women
The Role of Alcohol
- Interferes with clear thinking
- Interferes with ability to set limits
- Blurs your sense of danger
- Makes it harder or impossible to fight off an offender
- Causes blackouts and gaps in your memory about what you did or what happened
Common Date Rape Drugs
- Rohypnol (roofies, forget pill, circles mind erasers). Some rohypnol is now colored. Some drinks may turn blue, but do not use that as a standing rule.
- GHB (cherry meth, bedtime scoop, G, G-Juice, Gamma 10, Liquid E, Liquid Ecstacy). GHB (gamma-hydroxybutyrate) is marketed as Xyrem for the treatment of narcolepsy.
- Ketamine (Special K) is an anesthetic that is used in humans and animals.
- Do not accept drinks from other people and do not accept opened drinks.
- Do not leave your drink unattended.
- If something does not seem right, do not drink it.
- Be clear about your expectations.
- If possible, go out with a buddy or a group of friends.
- Do not be afraid to say no or ask for help.
How to Seek Help
- Get medical help right away. Call emergency medical services or have a friend take you to the emergency room, then contact the police.
- Ask for a urine test to see if a drug is in your body.
- Do not clean up where you think you were assaulted.
- Do not wash your clothes or yourself.
- Write down as much as you can remember about the person and your surroundings.
- Call a rape crisis center or other agency that can help you.
National Center on Domestic and Sexual Violence http://www.ncdsv.org
Rape, Abuse, and Incest National Network http://www.rainn.org
Canada Safety Council http://www.safety-council.org
Health Canada http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca
Date rape drugs fact sheet. Office on Women's Health website. Available at: http://www.womenshealth.gov/publications/our-publications/fact-sheet/date-rape-drugs.html. Updated July 16, 2014. Accessed October 21, 2014.
Dating violence. Office on Women's Health website. Available at: http://www.womenshealth.gov/violence-against-women/types-of-violence/dating-violence.html. Updated May 18, 2011. Accessed October 21, 2014.
Fitzgerald N, Riley KJ. Drug-facilitated rape: Looking for the missing pieces. National Criminal Justice Reference Service website. Available at: http://www.ncjrs.gov/pdffiles1/jr000243c.pdf. Accessed October 21, 2014.
Date rape. Nemours Kid's Health. Available at: http://kidshealth.org/teen/your%5Fmind/problems/date%5Frape.html. Updated April 2011. Accessed October 21, 2014.
Perspectives on acquaintance rape. American Academy of Experts in Traumatic Stress website. Available at: http://www.aaets.org/article13.htm. Accessed October 21, 2014.
Sexual violence and adolescents. National Online Resource Center on Violence Against Women website. Available at: http://www.vawnet.org/summary.php?doc%5Fid=421&find%5Ftype=web%5Fdesc%5FAR. Accessed October 21, 2014.
Teen dating voilence. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website. Available at: http://www.cdc.gov/violenceprevention/intimatepartnerviolence/teen%5Fdating%5Fviolence.html. Updated August 12, 2014. Accessed October 21, 2014.
- Reviewer: Michael Woods, MD
- Review Date: 10/2014
- Update Date: 10/21/2014