IF YOU ARE SEXUALLY ASSAULTED:
Get to a safe place. If you do not feel safe and feel you are in danger, call 911. After an assault, your first instinct will be to clean yourself. It is extremely important that you do not shower, bathe, douche, brush your teeth, wash your hands or change clothes. If you can avoid it, do not go to the bathroom. Do not eat, drink or take any medication including Tylenol or aspirin, unless life sustaining.
Seek medical attention. To ensure your health and to help with proper evidence collection, you should be examined immediately after the assault by medical personnel. It is your right to have a forensic sexual assault exam regardless of your decision to report the crime to the police. There is no fee to a victim for having this exam. SAVS has a Rape Crisis Center staffed with sexual assault nurse examiners and victims advocates ready to assist you. If you are injured or feel that you may have been drugged, you should go to the Emergency Room.
Remember, sexual assault is a crime of violence and IT IS NOT YOUR FAULT!
Common Responses to Sexual Violence:
There is no one typical response to sexual violence but many survivors experience a range of responses such as:
- Fear and anxiety
- Sadness and depression
- Intrusive memories of the assault
- Emotional numbing
- Difficulty concentrating
- Guilt and shame
- Negative thoughts or beliefs
- Relationship difficulties
- Physical health problems