I Think I Was Raped
It isn't your fault. You didn't deserve or cause what happened. The person who abused or raped you is the one to blame.
There are no rules for what you should do if you are raped or abused. Your safety and survival are always the most important considerations. If you are still alive, you did the right thing. But you still may not feel safe. Here are some suggestions that can help you to heal both physically and emotionally:
- As soon as you can, try to get help. Find a safe place and call the police, a family member, a friend, or look in the telephone book blue pages for a rape crisis or domestic violence hotline In Monroe County, PA, call Women’s Resources at: 570-421-4200. You do not need to give your name to speak with a hotline counselor.
- Consider going to a hospital, even if you don't think that you have been injured. You may have internal injuries, or have been exposed to a sexually transmitted disease. You can also learn about your options concerning pregnancy. If you decide to go to the hospital:
- You will be examined for injuries, and evidence will be collected in case you decide to press charges, either now or later. It will help if you do not shower, go to the bathroom, brush your teeth, drink, eat, or destroy or wash any of the clothing you were wearing. Wear the clothes you were wearing at the time of the assault to the hospital. Take a change of clothes with you because they will probably keep the clothes you were wearing as evidence. To preserve evidence, try not to disturb the scene of the assault.
- If you think you may have been drugged, tell the nurse and request a urine test. Don't go to the bathroom until you get to the hospital; if you can't wait, catch the urine in a jar and bring it to the hospital. Drugs are usually only detectable for the first 72 hours after ingestion. The first urine voided is the best chance for proving a date rape drug was used, but it also will identify any other drugs that are in your system.
- Hospitals are required to report any injury caused by a criminal act, such as a rape, to the police. You can choose to speak to the police, refuse to speak with them, or make arrangements to speak to them at a later time.
A trained counselor/advocate from the local rape crisis center can come to the hospital to provide information and emotional support. If the hospital staff does not offer to get a medical advocate, you can ask them to call your local rape crisis center to request one. In Monroe County, PA, call Women’s Resources at: 570-421-4200