1. the less you know about a person before meeting, the more important it is to be cautious. thus, when dating someone for the first time, seriously consider doing so in a group situation or meeting your date at a public place. this will allow you to assess your date’s behav­ior in a relatively safe environment.

2. Watch for indications that your date may be a dominat­ing person who may try to control your behavior. a man who plans all activities and makes all decisions during a date may also be inclined to dominate in a private setting.

3. If the man drives and pays for all expenses, he may think he is justified in using force to get "what he paid for." If you cover some of the expenses, he may be less inclined to use this rationale to justify acting in a sexu­ally coercive manner (Basrow & Minieri, 2011).

4. Avoid using alcohol or other drugs when you defi­nitely do not wish to be sexually intimate with your date. Consumption of alcohol or other drugs, by both victim and perpetrator, is commonly associated with acquaintance rape (Novik et al., 2011; Rose et al., 2011). Caffeinated alcoholic beverages, such as Four Loko, have been linked to sexual assault cases on college campuses (Jalonick, 2010; Pang, 2010). Drug intoxica­tion can both diminish your capacity to escape from an assault and reduce your date’s reluctance to engage in assaultive behavior.

5. Avoid behavior that may be interpreted as "teasing" Clearly state what you do and do not wish to do in regard to sexual contact. For example, you might say, "I hope you do not misinterpret my inviting you back to my apartment. I definitely do not want to do anything more than relax, listen to some music, and talk" If you are interested in initiating an exploration of some kind of early physical contact, you might say, "Tonight I would like to hold you and kiss, but I would not be comfortable with anything else at this point in our relationship." Such direct communication
can markedly reduce a man’s inclinations to force unwanted sexual activity or to feel "led on" (Muehlen – hard & Andrews, 1985; Muehlenhard et al., 1985).

6. If, despite direct communication about your intentions, your date behaves in a sexually coercive manner, you may use a "strategy of escalating forcefulness — direct refusal, vehement verbal refusal, and, if necessary, physical force" (Muehlenhard & Linton, 1987, p. 193). One study found that college students were most likely to label a scenario of date sex as rape if such activity was preceded by a clearly stated no (Sawyer et al., 1998). In another study, the response rated by men as most likely to get men to stop unwanted advances was for the woman to vehemently say, "This is rape, and I’m calling the cops" (Beal & Muehlenhard, 1987). If verbal protests are ineffective, reinforce your refusal with physical force, such as pushing, slapping, biting, kicking, or clawing your assailant. Men are more likely to perceive their actions as at least inappropriate, if not rape, when a woman protests not only verbally but also physically (Beal & Muehlenhard, 1987; Muehlen­hard & Linton, 1987). Self-defense training can be beneficial in situations in which women are able to use physical force to protect themselves from assault (Orchowski et al., 2008).