Any talk about sex must include a discussion about alcohol and other drugs.
Drugs like alcohol and marijuana can cloud your judgement. They can:
make it harder to say "no"
make it hard to think clearly and know right from wrong
make you forget what is important
make you falsely believe nothing bad can happen to you
make you do things you may wish you never did
Did You Know?
When people use alcohol, they take risks they wouldn't normally take. They have poor judgment and less control over their actions.
People who begin drinking before age 15 have four times the risk of developing an alcohol addiction compared with those who begin drinking at age 21.
The more someone is involved in drinking, the more likely they are to have had intercourse.
- Of 14-15 year olds who report regular use of alcohol, 66% have had intercourse.
- Of those who report no use of alcohol, 26% have had intercourse.
Sexual Assault Statistics
More than 75% of college students who experience unwanted intercourse are under the influence of alcohol or drugs at the time of the incident.
Sixty percent of college women who have acquired sexually transmitted diseases (including AIDS) were under the influence of alcohol at the time they had intercourse.
Alcohol and Sexual Assault
More than half of all rapists know their victim.
One out of three rapes occur on a date.
Often the rapist, the victim or both have been drinking.
- lower self control
- cause more aggressive actions
- make victims less alert to danger signals
- cause victims to be alone with someone in a risky situation and less able to defend themselves
Although women feel less sexually inhibited by drinking, sexual dysfunction is often linked to alcohol abuse.
Don't let anyone talk you into drinking.
Notice if friends, especially your driver, are or have been drinking.
Don't get into close, private situations with someone who has been drinking.
Don't let a friend who has been drinking go off alone with someone.
Always have an "escape plan" in case your driver has been drinking.
The less you drink, the more you will be aware of everyone else, your driver, your friend - and even someone you don't know who could hurt you.
Ways to Avoid Date Pressure
Adapted From the American Social Health Association
Hang out with friends who also believe that it's OK not to drink or have sex.
Date several people and hang out with different groups of people.
Go out with a group of friends rather than only your date.
Introduce your friends to your parents.
Invite your friends to your home.
Always carry money for a telephone call or cab in case you feel uncomfortable.
Stick up for your friends if they are being pressured to drink or have sex.
Think of what you would say in advance in case someone tries to pressure you to drink or have sex.
Be ready to call your mom, dad or a friend to pick you up if you need to leave a date.
Never feel obligated to "pay someone back" with sex in return for an expensive date or gift.
Say "no" like you mean it.
Mary Lee O'Connell, CRNP