Look a familiar sight? , we have all done it, felt a little bit threatened or uneasy and we automatically hold our keys in our hand, just in case we need a makeshift weapon (as if id have the balls to actually use them though). So how safe do we actually feel as women, although feminism has levelled the gender gap up on some things, our physical strength compared to men will never change, and we subconsciously go about our day as if we are under constant possible attack. After abit of reading up and through my own personal experiences, I have made a list of the things we are still doing in order to reassure ourselves, what I want to know is how much of my list is paranoia or are we really as much at risk as we believe? .
Walking home alone- we all hate it, especially if it is dark and often women will find themselves walking the long way because it is lighter or a ‘safer’ option.
Running alone at night- we don’t really do it, we fear attackers, in fact include avoiding dark alleys or lanes in this one because we avoid that if possible aswel (if we are honest).
Online dating- we are constantly warned of stranger danger, what if he is a rapist or an axe murderer people will say, hold on though, why are they not thinking the same about us ?.
Holidaying alone- The reasons iv read behind this is women simply think some places are not suitable or safe for women to travel alone.
Rape alarms-It is recommended we carry one in certain areas. Ever seen a guy with one?, enough said.
Alcoholic Drinks- We get people to babysit our drinks and would never have a sip of a drink that had been left unattended, just in case someone has spiked us, and we try not to drink to much when we are alone as it makes us venerable and open to attackers (but men are ok to roll around in the gutter like divs, without a care in the world).
Bags- We are advised to wear it over our head and shoulder to deter thieves, why? if your going to be mugged they will remove the bag either way.
Callers at the door- Or the electric or gasman, builder, carpet layer ect, we don’t like being home alone with them, you know, just incase they are rapists or axe murderers.
Headphones- Apparently we are crazy for removing one of our senses, we might make it easier for an attacker to creep up on us.
Heels and ponytails- Heels reduce our ability to escape and ponytails make it easier for an attacker to hold us.
These are just a small number of things that I notice we all do, how much of this is necessary though?, are we being made paranoid by the media or are we genuinely scared of our male counterparts.
Is this useful advice or are all these precautions that we take against ‘risks’ holding us back from living as free as men do.
It is an absolute fact that we are 13 times more likely to be attacked by somebody that we know rather than a stranger, so who comes up with these necessary precautions.
For most of us, we spend all day every day protecting ourselves from possible crime, door keys, house alarm, steering lock, hiding valuables from the eyes of possible thieves, car alarms, CCTV. We watch how we dress and where we go as to not encourage these people….are we insane or is this threat real?.
We are even guilty of this fear as parents, there are certain things that we don’t mind our sons doing but our daughters, no chance, including in times, where we allow them to go and who with. Are these fears drilled into us from previous generations, because statistics show that the risk of attack is extremely low so who makes us believe that it is so high? and is it having an impact on the way we live?.