Wednesday, March 12, 2008

WFMW - Self Defense

Yesterday I attended a MOPS meeting in which we had a presentation on self-defense. I left feeling both empowered, yet scared to death of the men hiding behind trees and bushes waiting to attack me. We discussed the statistics for my particular city. The numbers were scary. The speaker informed us of how many sex offenders live within our city, the number of carjackings that take place per year, the number of home break-ins, the number of children that go missing nationally each year. I was astounded, I still am. Oftentimes we build up a false sense of security based on the perfect image of suburbia in which we live. Believing that nothing bad happens in our neighborhoods and to our kids, but that is all a fictional standard that reality does not hold up to.

The speaker discussed our needs to be aware of our surroundings and to establish a confidence in ourselves that may deter us from being victims. She spoke to us about our choice whether to fight back or not. We learned how to fight back, how and where to attack. We learned how to keep ourselves safe and how to better protect our family. I have so many thoughts running through my mind. Though some of the information I heard today I already knew, or even practice, it was great to feel informed and know what I could do if need be.

I have listed many of the key points we discussed so that other women may feel safer and more knowledgeable if faced with such a horrible situation.

- Hit, kick, fight with as much power behind the swing as possible. You will only have gross motor skills available when your pulse is racing. Use blunt, powerful,moves to fight back. If you fight half-heartedly you will probably make the attacker more upset and violent.

- Do not leave the point of attack to go to a secondary location with the attacker. Nearly all women are killed if they leave with the attacker, they are now in a position of power. Do all you can to stay at the site of attack.

- Do not end up on the ground. He will be in the position of power. Enough said.

- Mace is a great defense and will eventually bring anybody down on their knees. Have some on your key chain and within easy reach at all times. Don't be afraid to use it. Check out for some great products.

- If attacked direct bystanders to call the police and shout out, "This is a stranger, I do not know this person." Most people will not interject into what they perceive to be a domestic dispute .

- Go for the eyes, nose, temples, sternum, feet, and groin when fighting back. Don't go for the groin first though, many male attackers are suspecting this as a first move. If it is a premeditated attack, they will probably be wearing a cup for their own protection.

- Always look in, under, and around your vehicle when approaching it. Keep all of the doors locked other than then one you are using to enter inside. Worry first about yourself and your children. You would rather have the stroller or your groceries stolen than get abducted or killed.

- If somebody enters your home, put as many barriers between them and yourself as possible (master bedroom, master bathroom - two locked doors between them and you). Have your cellphone handy for calling the police, they may have cut the phone line.

- Keep your home doors locked, keep your garage door closed even when working outside in the yard. Sliding glass doors are easy to lift and remove from their frame whether they are locked or not.

- If somebody comes to your front door, do not open it. Have a conversation through the door and call their supervisor to verify the persons need to be there for whatever reason. Make sure your front door has a peephole or a way to see the person on the other side. You can always refuse to let them in!

- Make sure you have adequate lighting around the perimeter of your home, and motion detector lighting is very effective to have.

- Close your blinds at dusk. Keep the bushes in front of your home cut low. Do not put anything of value within sight of your windows for others to view from outside.

What do you do specifically to keep yourself safe and what tips do you have for other readers about protecting themselves and their families?


Christine said...

Interestingly (or spooky) I went to a similar lecture this evening. GREAT post! I am going to link to it right now!

PreSchool Mama said...

Thanks for stopping by my blog.
This has been a concern of mine for a while now - there have been a number of robberies in my neighborhood, and we've been extra careful about opening doors to strangers, and keeping all doors locked shut even in the day time.

tootie said...

Your advice is so important. It's always good to be aware and prepared as you can.

Playful Professional said...

Thanks. I really want to go to a self-defense class so I can be prepared. My problem is that even if I'm being attacked I'm not sure if I can swing with whole force and actually hurting someone. I think a class would help me with that.

CC said...

I've been to a lot of similar classes and still always forget all this important info. Thanks!

Anonymous said...

thanks...I am now totally freaked out. :)