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Myth busting

It’s not your fault

“If you wear revealing clothes, it’s your own fault if you get raped.”

No girl deserves, or asks to be raped no matter what she wears.To say that, is like saying that someone is asking to be mugged because they are carrying a bag.This is just a way of excusing the behaviour of men who rape or abuse.

“I had too much to drink!”

If you are drunk, you are not able to give consent to sex freely, and the person who takes advantage of that vulnerability is guilty of rape and sexual assault.

“Everyone knows I fancied him – Who will believe he raped me?”

Knowing a girl fancies him does not give him the right to rape her. If he does not respect your rights to say no, then he is guilty of rape and sexual assault.

Other myths

“If a boy takes you out and spends a lot of money on you he’s entitled to something in return.”

Sex should involve an equal decision between two people. You have the right to say ‘no’ to sexual activity at any point, whether or not a boy or man has paid for your night out, drinks, meal, clothes etc. If a man forces sex on a woman after he has bought something for her, it is still rape.

“Rape isn’t serious – just sex when you don’t want it.”

Rape is not the same as sex. For the woman, it is a violent act over which she has no control and during it many women fear for their lives.

“Most girls who say they’ve been raped aren’t telling the truth. They’re just attention-seeking.”

Telling someone that they have been raped or abused is far from easy and women very rarely lie about it. Sometimes a girl who has told someone that has been raped or abused may take it back because she is afraid of what might happen as a result of her telling.

“But if it was your boyfriend, it doesn’t count as rape – especially if you’re had sex with him before.”

If you didn’t want it, it’s rape: Even if you’ve consented to sex before.You have the right to say no at any time, even while having sex.

“Only strangers are rapists. Never people you know.”

The most common rapists are the survivor’s husband or partner, and 97% of callers to the England and Wales rape crisis lines knew the abuser before they were raped. As many as one in three teenager girls have suffered sexual abuse from a boyfriend.