Date Rape and Acquaintance Rape Essays

Date Rape and Acquaintance Rape Essays

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Date rape is not a rare incident. Surveys indicate that in 84% of rape cases, the victim knows the attacker, and 57% of rapes occur on dates (Warshaw 11). However, what is even more surprising than these high statistics is that most incidents of date rape go unreported. Several theories exist that try to explain this phenomenon. For example, many women may refuse to believe that their “friend” raped them. In fact, they could eventually convince themselves that it never happened. Additionally, there is confusion following the attack in which memory and emotions become mixed up. When alcohol or drugs are involved, the women may have no memory of the attack whatsoever. Even if the victim does remember the attack, they could be left with a sense that they let themselves be taken advantage of. In cases such as this, the victim may blame them self instead of the attacker.

The shame involved in either being battered by or hurting someone we care for makes it hard to tell anyone, even those closest to us. People in abusive relationships often work hard at making it seem as if nothing is wrong. They try to convince themselves and others that “it’s not really that bad,” or that “it doesn’t happen all the time.” (Hicks 18)

Additionally, societal perceptions dictate that a woman should know how to set limits, and that they are responsible for their own actions.
Many women, thinking back on their sexual experiences, will respond affirmatively when asked the question “Have you ever had sex with a man when you didn’t want to, because he used physical force against you?” but at the same time offer a firm “no” when asked “Have you ever been raped?” (Bender 10-11)

While victims of date rape rarely report the crime, the psychological effects are just as bad as if a stranger raped them. Since fewer women seek counseling or treatment for date rape than for rape by a stranger, the effects can be even more severe. In recent years, public attention has been drawn to the prevalence of date rape through the media and researchers. However, many believe that date rape is still the most widely under-reported crime. (Warshaw 11-14)
     Date rape has existed for as long as recorded history. In fact a date rape is described in the Old Testament (2 Sam. 13: 1-15) committed by Amnon, son of Kind David. Despite its long history, public awareness and attention has not been drawn ...

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Educators choose to ignore the reality that acquaintance rape happens in junior highs, senior highs, and colleges across the country. Moreover, some school officials find it easier to punt the problem back to uninformed parents rather than risk calling attention to a possible negative situation in their own institutions. (Warshaw 169)
Often, parents are reluctant to consider that their “perfect” child could commit date rape or could put themself in a position to be date raped. However, if these attitudes are changed and teachers and parents begin to educate young people about date rape, the prevalence of date rape will begin to drop drastically.

Works Cited

Bender, David Date Rape San Diego: Greenhaven Press, 2008

Hicks, John Dating Violence Brookfield: Millbrook Press, 2007

Lindquist, Scott The Date Rape Prevention Book Naperville: Sourcebooks, 2012

Mufson, Susan Straight Talk About Date Rape New York: Facts On File, 2009

Parrot, Andrea Date Rape & Acquaintance Rape New York: Rosen Publishing Group,

Thornhill, Randy. The History of Rape. Cambridge: MIT Press, 2012

Warshaw, Robin. I Never Called It Rape New York: Harper & Row, 1994

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