Myths vs Facts


Myth: Rape is a minor crime that only affects a few people.
Fact: 1 in 4 girls and 1 in 6 boys will be sexually assaulted before the age of 18. There are hundreds of women raped every year in the U.S. Rape is a crime that affects everyone – the victim, their family and friends, and society as a whole.

Myth: Rapes occur mostly in large, metropolitan areas.
Fact: Rape occurs everywhere. Rapes are reported in small towns, rural areas, and in large cities. However, victims in small towns are often less likely to report the rape because they are afraid that the community will know.

Myth: Rape is an act of passion or lust.
Fact: Rape is about power, control and violent crime. The violent act is not motivated by sexual gratification.

Myth: Some girls provoke rape by the way they dress or act.
Fact: No one asks or deserves to be raped no matter what they are doing. A victim cannot cause a rapist to assault them. Rapists choose their victims because they seem vulnerable, not because of appearance or behavior.

Myth: Most sexual assaults are attacks by strangers.
Fact: 74% of all rape victims know their attacker. We are often the most vulnerable after we let our guard down to people we know.

Myth: A “real rape” will involve a weapon and/or physical injury to the victim.
Fact: Less than 5% of sexual assaults involve a weapon and over 2/3 report no physical injury as a result of the attack. Rape is rape regardless of the level of physical violence associated with the attack.
Myth: If the assailant and the victim are both drunk, the assailant cannot be charged with rape.
Fact: Forcing sex on someone who is too drunk to give consent is rape. Rape is a crime. People who commit crimes while under the influence of alcohol or drugs are not considered free from guilt.
Myth: Women fantasize about being raped.
Fact: No woman fantasizes about being raped. Fantasies about aggressive sex may be controlled and turned off if they become threatening. In rape, the victim is unable to control the violence and stop it.
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