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October 22, 2018 - Welcome Guest!

Advice » Hard Knocks

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Definition of Rape


I am not quite clear on the exact definition of rape. About a week ago, under the heavy influence of alcohol and possibly date-rape drugs, I had gone back to a previously unknown guy's place. I do not remember much of the night, but I do recall my attempts to push away and replying "no" to any requests he made to me. The confusing part is I do not remember what he did, but am fairly sure we did not have sex, although other sexual acts had most definitely taken place.

Does ANY sexual act constitute as rape, or must sexual intercourse be involved? I'd feel somewhat better if I could define what might have happened that night.

Ishock, 18 year old woman


Dear Ishock,

I am sorry to hear that you were abused. In terms of answering your question, it is important to realize that there is a difference between legal rape and what a therapist, and I believe, the general public would consider rape. Sex is supposed to be a mutually agreed activity between mature people who are in command of all their faculties. It should never be forced and never manipulated.

You certainly weren't completely willing and you were at least drunk. If you were right about "date rape" drugs then you were manipulated and violence was perpetrated against you. That is rape. I don't particularly care if penetration occurred or if it was just forceful fondling. I would still call it rape.

You said "no" and no is supposed to mean no. It does not sound as if you have a legal case for rape, but you could always check with an attorney. It might constitute assault and battery. People learn by adverse consequences. I am sure he would be shocked and feel like a victim himself, but it might make him more hesitant to do something like this in the future.

This could have happened to anyone, but it might make sense to take extra precautions in the future and know someone better before going over to their house. It would also help to be careful about drinking with someone you don't know well. I have heard of many cases of "date rape drugs" in the last few years.

Take care.

Jef Gazley, M.S., LMFT

This question was answered by Jef Gazley M.S. Jef has practiced psychotherapy for twenty-five years, specializing in Love Addiction, Hypnotherapy, Relationship Management, Dysfunctional Families, Co-Dependency, Professional Coaching, and Trauma Issues. He is a trained counselor in EMDR, NET, TFT, and Applied Kinesiology. He is dedicated to guiding individuals to achieving a life long commitment to mental health and relationship mastery. His private practice locations are Scottsdale and Tempe, Arizona. You can also visit Jef at the internettherapist, the first audiovisual mental health online counseling center on the net.

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