If You Are Assaulted

Remember: You are not to blame for the sexual assault.

You have options. You can:

Forensic Exams Consist of:

Do's and Don'ts of a forensic exam:

  • Important evidence may be on your body or clothes, so you may bring the clothes you wore during and after the assault with you to the exam.
  • Try not to bathe if possible, but if you must, save the clothes in a paper bag.
  • If you choose to report to the police, you may do so at that time. 

If You Plan to Report this Crime to the Police:

It is best not to bathe or change clothes, however, that is your decision. Important evidence may be on your body and/or clothes. This can be collected during the medical examination and useful to the police should you decide to press charges. You can have a Rape Crisis Center Advocate present during the report at the police station, SANE unit, hospital, or Rape Crisis Center office.

What You May Feel If You Have Been Assaulted

People's emotional reactions to a sexual assault vary, but some common responses include:

  • Feeling responsible for the assault. Remember, a survivor is never responsible for the assailant's behavior.
  • Feeling angry and take your anger out on loved ones.
  • Feeling ashamed of what has happened to you.
  • Feeling helpless because it seems you lost control of the situation.
  • Wanting to deny that the assault was serious or that it happened at all.
  • Feeling unclean even after bathing.
  • Having difficulty sleeping at night or experiencing nightmares.
  • Inability to resume a comfortable sexual relationship with the person you love.

Trained volunteers and staff are at the Rape Crisis Center to help you deal with these or any other concerns that you may have. Be assured that you are not alone as you work through your experience.

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