Safety Precautions and Self Defence for Women
BY ALANNA REBECCA
Have you ever witnessed rape or have been a victim of rape yourself? The very thought of rape will send an average woman a wave of fear. As a woman, it is natural to be afraid and to shy away due to embarrassment when it comes to this topic. However, it is high time that we took a stand and learnt to not be blind to take precautions and to protect ourselves, self-defend.
Rape cases in Malaysia have increased immensely - with 3,173 cases reported in 2010. 3,409 and 3,626 cases reported in 2008 and 2009. These statistics were given by the Polis Diraja Malaysia. According to my.theasianparent.com, statistics suggest that as many as 73% of all rape cases reported in Malaysia involved children aged 18 and below, and in most cases the crime is committed by people known to the victims.
In 2010, Haslinah Yacob, President of the All Women's Action Society concluded using statistics from year 2000 to 2009 that only ONE in every ten cases are reported and that "it is possible to surmise that in Malaysia, approximately one person is raped every 15 minutes." And this was in 2010.
We cannot allow the numbers to keep hiking up in the years to come so here are some safety precautions to take and steps on how to simply escape an attack, NOT stay and fight!
Dressing appropriately is very important. Yes, fully clothed school going children have been victims but as grown women, we must also be aware of the extra attention we are receiving from potential rapists. “Teach your son how to respect women” is a phrase we often blurt out when it comes to rape but we as women should also be mindful of the attention we are seeking without even being aware.
Take responsibility over your own actions. Avoid excessive use of alcohol as they interfere with clear thinking, effective communication and your ability to respond in your own best interest. Especially when out at clubs, always go with a familiar group of friends. Do not accept drinks from strangers nor take any pills that may interfere with rationalization either. Say “no” when you mean “no”. There are limits to being nice and having a group of friends to stick with is best. Also, make sure there are men in the group as well to ward off watching predators. It is easier for them to attack a group of girls with a gang than a group with a number of men who can help fend as a unit.
Having personal protection items are important. Minimize the number of possessions you bring with you and use that extra space for pepper sprays, mace, or a personal alarm. Carry it somewhere where you can get to it quickly - don't leave it buried at the bottom of your bag. If you choose to carry any type of weapon for self-protection, give careful consideration to your ability and willingness to use it. Remember there is always the chance that it could be taken away and used especially if it is a pocketknife, a parang or any of that sort.
When travelling and staying at a hotel, www.simpleselfdefenseforwomen.com suggests that you “don't let the front desk attendant publicize your room number. If he or she announces it out loud when giving you your key, don’t hesitate to ask for a different room.” Always be mindful of your surroundings when approaching your designated room. If someone is walking too close to you let them pass, you don’t want them to push you into your own room where you will both be alone.
Show your anger, not your fear. Women who resist attacks and act quickly are less likely to be raped, than those who are passive. The optimum time to react is in the first 20 seconds when the body releases chemicals in the blood that help to put up a fight. Be cautious if he has a weapon. A sudden burst of furious reaction often may stop an attack. Remember that an attacker is looking for an easy victim. Yelling is always a good deterrent (a good choice is to yell FIRE) as this will draw attention to those who do not...
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