Did you know that every 2 minutes, someone in the United States is sexually assaulted, and 44% of those victims are under the age of 18? Furthermore, out of those sexual assaults, 60% of cases are not reported to the police.
These statistics may feel so scary when you read them, but the point isn’t to frighten you. Instead, Teensource.org wants you to know the facts so that you can be aware of your environment and possible risks, and take action to prevent them.
Sexual assault can mean many things, and can happen with someone you do or do not know The important thing to keep in mind is that sexual assault is a term which indicates any unwanted sexual contact. This means that sexual assault can be committed even by a partner. When you say “No” it means “no”. When you say “no” it means “STOP”.
Interested in steps you can take to prevent sexual assault? Check out RAINN’s Back-To-School Safety Tips on precautions you and your friends can take to keep yourselves safe.
If you (or a loved one) have already experienced sexual assault, there are still steps you can take to make sure you care for yourself appropriately.
- Report your experience to the authorities, counselor, and/or loved one right away! These resources can provide the help and emotional strength you may need to begin to heal from the experience, and importantly, to protect yourself from pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases.
- Call 1.800.656.HOPE for help. It is never too late to reach out for help or counseling after your experience.
- Visit Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault Services, RAINN (Rape, Abuse, and Incest National Network), and/or Sexual Assault Crisis and Support Center for anonymous support and services.