Berks Women In Crisis 'Committed to the elimination of interpersonal and institutional violence within our community'

Acquaintance & Date Rape

Acquaintance or date rape is defined as forced sexual contact without consent of both participants by someone who is not a stranger. It includes, but is not limited to, the use of physical force, emotional bargaining, blackmail or mind games to force another person into sexual activity.

Rape is a crime motivated by the need of a person to feel powerful and in control. Rape is not perpetuated because of uncontrollable sexual urges or lack of sexual opportunities. It is not violent sex, but a violent crime where sex is the weapon. Most date rapes occur on weekends between 10 p.m. and 1 a.m. in an isolated area such as a car or in the victim's or offender's home.

More than 80 percent of all rape suriviors know their attackers. They may be a friend, date, neighbor, co-worker, relative partner or ex-partner. Many different emotions are sommon for a survivor of acquaintance/date rape: denial, fear, shock, embarrassment, shame, anger, anxiety. In addition to these feeling many survivors of acquaintance/date rape have an added amount of guilt, self-blame and betrayal of trust. Their attacker may have had their trust before the attack and the survivor feels they should have known something terrible would happen.

Rape is a serious, violent crime that is never justified under any circumstance. No one ever wants or deserves to be raped, and no one has the right to sexually abuse another person for any reason. Survivors are not to blame for the rape and are not responsible for the offendor's violent behavior.