Reporting Is Optional
You may choose to report the incident and speak to the police as part of the exam, but you do not have to talk to the police or anyone else until you are ready. Your evidence can be collected and stored anonymously until you decide whether to report (up to 90 days).
Bring Someone You Trust
If you feel comfortable, bring someone you trust. Bring a friend, family member, roommate, or colleague. When deciding who to bring, ask that person whether they can honor your privacy or if there are limits to the confidentiality they can offer; sometimes RAs or university staff members have reporting requirements
Try Not To Shower
For a Sexual Assault Forensic Exam, try not to shower, bathe, douche, wash your hands, brush your teeth, comb your hair, use a toilet, eat/drink, smoke, chew gum, or change your clothes. This may be difficult, but it you do any of the above you may destroy evidence that will be needed if you decide to report the crime to police.
Bring a Change of Clothes
In preparation for a Sexual Assault Forensic Exam, for you own comfort, and to preserve evidence, bring a change of clean clothes and a paper bag filled with items involved in the incident.
Supporting Victims and Survivors
If your friend has experienced sexual assault, here are ways to support them:
- Believe them
- Help them explore their options
- Listen to them
- Never blame them for being assaulted
- Ask before you touch
- Recognize you've been hurt too and get help for yourself
Learn more about these tips with this information sheet from Men Can Stop Rape.
Learn more about safely intervening before a potential assault with these tips from Men Can Stop Rape.