I would never want to hurt someone or be accused of sexual assault. What can I do to protect myself?

  • Listen carefully. Take the time to hear what your date is saying. If you feel you are getting "mixed messages," ask for a clarification. Make sure to get consent.
  • Don't fall for the common stereotype that when someone says "No" they really mean, "Yes." "No" means "No." If someone says "No" to sexual contact, stop.
  • Remember, date rape is a crime. It is never acceptable to use force in sexual situations, no matter what the circumstances.
  • Don't assume that your date wants to have sex because they drink, dress "provocatively," or agree to home with you; because they had sex with you previously; because they willingly engage in kissing and/or other sexual interaction; because you bought them dinner and drinks.
  • Be aware that having sex with someone who is mentally or physically incapable of giving consent is rape. If you have sex with someone who is intoxicated, drugged, passed out, incapable of saying "No," or unaware of what is happening around him or her, you may be guilty of rape.
  • Get involved if you believe someone is at risk. If you see someone using force or pressuring his or her date, don't be afraid to intervene by getting help. You may save someone from becoming a victim.
  • Avoid clouding your judgment and understanding of what another person wants by using alcohol and other drugs.