The moment someone accuses you of a sexual crime, the court of public opinion tends to look at you as guilty. There is little chance to save your image or refute the claims against you before people move to judge you harshly.
Fortunately, the criminal justice system follows a fairer path. But that does not help protect your reputation and save you from the stress of public judgment. To save your sanity, there are some things you should do once the accusations become public.
While your first instinct may be to defend yourself and plead your case, it is not likely to help. In fact, it could make things worse because anything you say is something people can turn around and use against you. Your best bet is to stay quiet. Do not give comments or talk about the situation at all except to your attorney.
While you obviously need to get legal help right away, you may also need other forms of assistance. Depending on the situation, you may need to get a restraining order or alert the police that someone is harassing you. In this country, you are innocent until proven guilty, so you have rights, and law enforcement must help you.
You also want to look out for your mental health. If you feel yourself struggling, seek care. Do not be afraid to admit the situation is weighing heavily on you and taking a toll on your health.
Remember that you will have your day in court to plead your case. You do not owe the public an explanation. Try your best to ignore what the court of public opinion is saying and focus on defending yourself in the legal system where it counts.