For Parents

Date Rape: What You Need to Know

Date Rape is a crime that is rarely reported, yet takes place frequently right here in Nevada County.

ONE OUT OF EVERY THREE SEXUAL ASSAULTS THAT WE SEE IS A YOUTH BETWEEN 12 AND 17 YEARS OLD.

A sexual act is considered rape if it takes place without consent freely given. No matter what.
No matter what the circumstances are, what clothes were worn, where it took place, or any other factor changes the fact that without consent, a sexual act is rape.

A sexual act with any individual under 18 is Statutory Rape.
Statutory Rape is defined as sexual intercourse with a person under 18 (California Penal Code 261.5).
According to the law, consent cannot be given if the individual is under 18. This law is to protect our daughters from being manipulated or coerced into having sex.

Why teens don’t tell their parents (or other adults) if they have been raped
We can’t even pretend to know all of the reasons. But we have heard a few of them more than once:

  • She had been drinking. Teens know that drinking alcohol is against the law, and are worried that the rape was their fault if they were drunk. Let them know that they can talk to you even if they do something that they know is wrong.
  • No one will believe her. There are many reasons teens are worried that they won’t be believed. If the rapist is her boyfriend, others might think she gave consent and she’s lying about it. Another common reason is that it’s someone the family knows and likes, and can’t imagine him as a rapist. Let her know that you will believe her, no matter what she tells you.
  • You’ll be upset or disappointed in her. Teens can be very protective of their parents, and don’t want to upset them, or give them something else to worry about. Teens also want their parents to feel proud of them, and feel that their parents can trust them. Reassure her that you can support her in any situation that she might be in, and that you can go to other resources in the community if you need help. Let her know that you love and support her no matter what happens.

Read Date Rape: the Importance of Consent to learn more about Date Rape.