rape; sexual; intercourse; consent; assault; ;
What is rape?
Rape is sexual intercourse without consent or with indifference to consent.
- Indifference to consent is a legal term that means, for example, if a man has sex with a woman who is drunk or drugged and who does not protest, because she is not in a condition to give consent, it is rape. This means that the man does not care whether she gives consent or not (indifference).
The difference between healthy sexual contact and rape is not the sexual act, but the lack of consent.
- Examples of lack of consent include using physical force such as hitting, shoving, pushing, slapping, grabbing arms or wrists, and holding down.
- If pressure is put on you or you are bullied into having sex when you don't want to, or you show by your behaviour that you are not consenting it is still rape, even if you have not actually said 'No'.
Often rapists make excuses in an attempt to justify rape. They often use excuses to try to shift responsibility for rape away from them. It is important to remember that nobody has the right to force someone else into an unwanted sexual activity.
However regardless of whether you are raped by a stranger or somebody you know, it is a crime of violence and is illegal.
Crisis centres in many places provide a range of confidential medical and counselling services, for males and females who experience rape or sexual assault. They are staffed by doctors and trained counsellors. Services vary from place to place, but examples of services provided include the following:
- A crisis service providing medical care and counselling support for people who have recently been raped. If you have made or are considering filing a police report, you can ask the doctor to collect physical evidence of the assault.
- Counselling support for recent and past rape survivors.
- Information on court procedures and compensation claims.
- Counselling and support for 'significant others' (partners, family and friends) regarding the sexual assault.
- Follow up medical care for related health problems.
- Rape and sexual assault survivor groups.
If you are in danger, call the police 000 or 13 14 44 or ambulance immediately. Remember that it is not your fault and there are people who will believe you.
Resources in South Australia
- Yarrow Place Rape and the Sexual Assault Service (for people over the age of 16 at the time of the assault)
- Medical care is also available at hospital emergency departments, your local doctor, and family planning or youth clinics.
- If you are under 16 you can receive counselling and/or medical support from the Child Protection Units:
- Women and Children's Hospital Tel: 8161 7346 or after hours 8161 7000
- Flinders Medical Centre Tel: 8204 5485 or after hours 8204 5511.
For lots more information
The information on this site should not be used as an alternative to professional care. If you have a particular problem, see a doctor or other health professional.