The Thistle Volume 13, Number 1: August 29, 2000.

Protecting Against Rape

Ideas for Women

* Be aware that the rapist might be someone that you know, that it might happen in your house or room, that you have the right to say ďNOĒ and be respected, that you are more at risk when you have been drinking or using drugs.

* Establish sexual limits for yourself and Communicate these firmly and clearly.

* Trust your instincts: if you feel pressured, afraid, or uncomfortable, leave, get help, or protest loudly.

* Be cautious of all men you meet for the first time. Just because your date is a doctor, scientist, or engineer or is studying to be one, doesnít necessarily make them a safe person to be with.

* Watch for controlling behavior such as: putting you down, manipulating you to get his way, talking negatively about women, making all the decisions in the relationship, subscribing heavily to sex-role stereo- types, acting excessively jealous or possessive.

Ideas for Men

* Never force, pressure or coerce anyone to have sex. Donít take silence as consent.

* Donít have sex with someone who is drunk, passed out, or asleep.

* Stop if someone says, ďNo,Ē is reluctant or is not clearly consenting.

* Donít assume that someone wants to have sex because of their reputation or dress.

* Never think a woman owes a man sex, under any circumstances. Sexual intercourse is not a payback for an expensive meal or an evening out on the town.

* Stay in touch with your sexual desires and do not let them control your behavior. Arousal does not justify rape.

* Donít make or laugh at degrading jokes about women. Challenge abusive behavior when you witness it. If you see a woman in trouble at a party, donít be afraid to intervene.

* STOP! ASK! CLARIFY! Do not assume you know what your partner wants. Find out by talking.

FACT: Some MIT students are rapists. Some have even drugged womenís drinks and raped them.

Things to know about Dating Violence

Welcome to MIT! The next four years should be challenging, exciting, and fun as you delve into subjects more deeply than youíve ever has the opportunity to do before. This may also be the first time you are starting off on your own - family and friends far away. The best tool for making the coming adventure a safe one is already on you - itís your gut. That gut of yours is much smarter than the Ďol gray matter when it comes to safety. Listen carefully to what it tells you. No one deserves the ďbenefit of the doubtĒ. A real friend or potential partner will give you space and time to decide how much you are ready to trust them. Someone who is in a big hurry or is pushy or demanding isnít thinking about your feelings - so why should you worry about theirs? They can FUCK OFF! And if you feel in a big hurry to get laid, you might wonders what this is about. Are you really looking for companionship to get over the loneliness of a new place? Are you trying to make a painful past event, like rape, seem like it wasnít ďa big deal because sex isnít ďa big dealĒ. Are you trying to live up to some hype from Hollywood or your so-called friends? Donít get me wrong, I have nothing against sex. I am definitely not puritan! Itís just that until we can get rapists to wear a tattoo on their foreheads that says ďIím a rapistĒ in bold clear letters, a bit of cautious scoping out of a potential partner is all we got. So take some time and listen to that gut before you get drunk with someone or before you invite them into your room. And to all you rapists out there, YOUíRE SICK! Sex is something to be shared, NEVER taken. No one ever owes anyone any kind of affection or physical contact. No one ever deserves to be raped! No one ever deserves to be drugged or gotten drunk. Physical contact ALWAYS requires explicit, meaningful, and freely given consent.


The Thistle Volume 13, Number 1: August 29, 2000.