If you have been sexually assaulted

If you were sexually assaulted, you are not alone.

What happened to you was not your fault. Feeling like you are going “crazy” due to all of the overwhelming feelings you may have is a completely normal response. Counseling can help you deal with these feelings in a supportive and caring environment.


  • Remember that it is not your fault

  • Be aware that help is available

  • Call a crisis hotline, 800.656.HOPE

  • Try to find a support network of friends or family that you can talk to.

  • Express your feelings in a journal or diary.

  • Go to a safe location away from the attacker.

  • Seek medical care as soon as possible. Even if you do not have any visible physical injuries, you may be at risk of becoming pregnant or acquiring a sexually transmitted infection.

  • Contact someone who may help you such as law enforcement, your local rape crisis center or a person you trust.

  • Consider preserving evidence: By avoiding cleaning or straightening up, evidence may be collected from the assault location. Though it may be hard not to clean up, the police will need to examine the scene for evidence if you report the crime.

  • Consider remaining in the clothing worn during the assault or putting the clothing in a paper bag (not plastic) so that it can be entered into evidence. If possible, avoid washing the clothing.

  • Consider preserving forensic evidence which can be collected from your body through a sexual assault forensic exam. For this reason, avoid bathing, washing hands, or brushing your teeth if possible.

  • Ask a healthcare provider, law enforcement, or rape crisis center where you can go for a sexual assault forensic examination (SAFE) to be conducted. Note: you are not required to have a sexual assault forensic exam. It is ideal to collect forensic evidence from the body within 72 hours.

  • If you suspect you have been drugged, request that a urine sample be collected. Inform the sexual assault nurse examiner that you suspect you were drugged.

  • If possible, write down, tape or record by any other means all the details you can recall about the assault and the assailant.

  • Know that your local rape crisis center is available to help you. Visit www.centers.rainn.org