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 things men can do to stop rape

Define your own manhood. Consider whether messages about manhood, like “don't take no for an answer” and “be tough” play a role in creating unhealthy and unsafe relationships. Choose what kind of man you want to be. 

Talk it over. Better communication in sexual situations-listening to the other person, stating desires clearly, and asking when a situation is unclear-will make relationships safer and healthier. Create a space to speak honestly about sex. 

Understand the ability to consent. Drugs and alcohol can affect people's ability to decide whether they want to be sexual with someone. If a person is “really out of it” and can't give consent, wait until you both are ready to enthusiastically say yes. 

Get a woman's perspective. Ask women how the fear of rape affects their daily lives and whether they know someone who has been raped. Listen and learn from them about the impact of rape and how to stop it. 

Ask guys. Ask men how it would feel to be seen as a potential rapist and how they would feel if a woman or girl in their life was sexually assaulted. Learn about the ways sexual violence touches the lives of men.

Be aware of pop culture's messages. We are surrounded daily by TV shows, music, magazines, video games, and movies that communicate messages about masculinity and relationships. Don not let images in popular culture dictate your behavior.


Choose words carefully. When you use words to put women down, you support the belief that they are less than fully human. It is easier to ignore women's well-being when they are seen as inferior. Choose language that respects women. 


Speak out. You probably will never see a rape in progress, but you will hear attitudes and see behaviors that degrade women and promote a culture of violence. When your friend tells a joke about rape, say you don't find it funny. Use your voice. 


Get involved. Join a student group working to prevent violence against women. Or if there isn't a student group, start your own. Men's anti-rape groups are becoming more and more common. Make a difference. 


Show your strength. Don't ever have sex with anyone against their will. Make a pledge to be a man with strength. 


(Adapted from Men Can Stop Rape)

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