A 22-year-old Waihi mother is suffering panic attacks and refuses to venture into public alone after she was brutally raped on the roadside while attempting to hitchhike from Waihi to Tauranga.

The woman has spoken out about the attack in the hope someone will come forward and provide information about the man she said pushed her over, banged her head against the ground, raped her and spat on her before leaving her on the roadside.

The woman was drunk and alone, attempting to catch a lift from the southern outskirts of Waihi when the attack happened some time between 2am and 3am on Sunday, June 7.

The woman, who has a one-year-old son, said her attacker stopped outside Waihi cemetery, wound down the passenger window of his vehicle and offered her a ride. The woman declined.

"I didn't like the look of him. I've hitched all over the countryside, I don't get scared easily."

As she walked away, the man got out of the vehicle, came up behind the woman and dragged her to the ground.

"He was calling me crude names, telling me I was pretty hot for a slut," she said.

Just over a week on, with her attacker still on the loose, the woman is preparing to move towns and is suffering anxiety and paranoia.

"I can't go into the public now, I'm pretty anxious. I've got to have someone with me all the time," she said. "I can't sleep at all, I have nightmares when I do finally drift off."

Following the attack the woman thinks she may have passed out, coming to in a ditch.

She headed to a nearby duck pond where she sat before walking to her mother's house, where she arrived about 8.30am.

There she spent two hours in the shower attempting to wash away the dirty feeling that had come over her, she said.

The following day she reported the attack to police and was taken to Thames for tests, the results of which are yet to come back.

"I feel like I can't be a proper mother, I can't explain it but when I look at my son I feel guilty," she said.

If you have any information regarding this attack contact Detective Simon Everson of the Waihi Police Criminal Investigation Branch on (07) 863 8179.

- BAY OF PLENTY TIMES