Dean of Students

Alcohol & Rape: What If I Had Been Drinking?

Over 96% of campus sexual assaults experienced by college students occur in situations involving alcohol by the victim, the assailant, or both.

Often, victims who had been drinking and/or using drugs at the time of an assault have intense feelings of self-blame. They are also more likely to encounter blaming responses from other people who may feel like the victim is somehow culpable because of his/her decision to drink.

A victim is NEVER responsible for a sexual assault.

Here are four easy ways to reduce your risk of sexual violence if you are choosing to drink alcohol;

Plan Ahead.

  • Determine your limit. How much will you drink and how long will you stay?
  • Know who you will be with and make a pact to leave together.
  • Know how you will get back to your home and ensure that a sober person will be your responsible escort.
  • Have a back-up plan if something goes wrong.

Only party with people who respect and support your choices.

  • Avoid parties hosted or attended by strangers.
  • Make sure you always surround yourself with friends who have your best interests in mind.
  • Avoid partying or drinking in places that are new to you (other colleges, off-campus apartments, etc.)

Drink slowly and carefully and NEVER with the purpose of getting drunk.

  • Eat before, during and after you drink.
  • Drink non-carbonated, non-alcoholic beverages throughout the night.

Avoid …

  • High-risk behavior
  • Playing drinking games
  • Drinking from common sources (kegs, punch bowls, etc.)
  • Accepting a drink you have not poured yourself
  • Leaving a drink unattended
  • Partying in an environment where other people are urging you to drink

Even if the person who assaulted you was drinking, he/she is still responsible for his/her behavior. Being drunk is not an excuse for committing ANY criminal acts, including sexual assaults.