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You can't reason with a
But you can con, lie to and trick one.
How To Avoid Rape
A nuts-and-bolts approach
On this page:
Near Rape Story | Don't Put Yourself In a Situation Where You Could Be Raped | Avoid Isolation | Do NOT Incapacitate Yourself | Watch For It Going Weird | TAOPuRSU | Who Says You Can't Lie? | Do NOT Use Ineffective Violence | Your Goal Is NOT To Fight, It Is To Escape | Call In Extra Help
There is a reason why we put this page last on the No Nonsense Self Defense Rape Hub.
That's because avoiding rape is only easy if you understand what is going on within yourself, in your surroundings and haven't blindly put yourself into a high risk situation.
Without these factors you will not be mentally prepared to do what you have to do in order to prevent being raped. Whether that is to escape or break his jaw or kill him -- in a rape situation you may be called upon to do any of these option. Blindly putting yourself into a situation where your choices are be raped or commit extreme violence never has good results.
The entire hub is a study in how complex the issue of rape is and how you must be aware of your own assumptions, your power, it's effects, unconscious impulses, your biological imperatives, anger, beliefs about violence, misconceptions about self-defense and personal safety -- as well as knowing who it isn't safe to be alone with, especially if you've been drinking or doing drugs. That's a lot of stuff we cover in the Safe Dating page.
A huge problem about avoiding being raped is that it is a dangerous situation that doesn't look dangerous from one perspective. Yes, it strange and often highly emotional situation, but WHO DOESN'T FACE THOSE ALL THE TIME?!? Why should this one be any different?
But as you will soon see, from another perspective those same circumstances will even cause professionals (who deal with crime and violence regularly) to start having kittens. Looked at from another perspective, what you may think is simply annoying and obnoxious, is a screaming danger signal.
But until you understand why one thing can be annoying (but safe) and another the whistle of a runaway training barreling towards you, you're not going to realize you are in danger. And if you don't realize you're in danger, how can you be prepared to handle it? You may think that you'd be able to handle it, but as countless thousands of women who are raped every year discover the hard way -- they couldn't handle the situation they found themselves in.
In short, if you go into dangerous situation without being prepared, you're going to get hurt.
And by being prepared we don't just mean having a list of "I'll just do this if it ever happens" There's a giant gap between intellectually 'knowing' something and being mentally prepared to do whatever it takes to stop from being raped.
This is why we strongly suggest -- if you have just arrived on this page through a search engine -- that you go get yourself a cup of coffee, come back to the computer, go to the Rape Hub and be prepared to spend the next few hours reading. It's that big of a subject.
To help you avoid being raped, we're going to tell you a story.
A Near Rape Story
A number of years ago Marc's ex came to him about a problem with one of her classmates/friend. At a trade school they attended, a large male student had developed an obsession with the female classmate. The classmate had initially tried to be polite and keep him at a distance, but the male student became more and more unstable and obsessive. He continually tried to talk to her and -- in the classroom -- would find excessive reasons to touch her.
Realize this was a culinary school. In a professional kitchen there is a lot of communication and physical contact for safety reasons(1). But even given these parameters, he was excessive in his talking and touching. On the touching part, he was continually offering her backrubs (and on two occasions walking up and without being given permission and attempting to do so). Needless to say at first she was uncomfortable, but then she became angry with him. And the weirder his behavior became the more outraged she got.
This odd behavior escalated to the point of one evening, after staring at her all night, he disappeared into the men's room. He returned 15 minutes later with a ... shall we say, 'glazed' expression. Any way you cut it, this is an "ewwww" situation. The other students reacted in a mix of disgust and course humor. The female classmate was furious. Not only was she disgusted, but she was outraged over this public humiliation. However, when she confronted him, he laughed in her face. Realizing that this was way beyond normal, Marc's ex came home and explained what was going on.
Marc hit the roof.
Years of experience with dealing with crime and violence told him that this was a VERY dangerous situation. One that was about to reach critical mass. All it would take is certain conditions to be 'accidentally' created, one small misstep by the woman and she would be attacked. What was obnoxious, socially unacceptable behavior from one perspective, was -- to his experienced perspective -- at best a physical assault brewing. But more likely a rape about to happen. This wasn't just the whistle of a runaway train, this was the vibration coming up your feet. And this woman was standing dead on the tracks.
Calling the classmate to come over to their apartment, Marc listened in growing horror, not as his suspicions were confirmed. His horror wasn't about the circumstances, but over the fact that the woman was so angry that she didn't see the danger. All she could see/imagine/think about was her emotional outrage at being treated this way.
Marc asked what she planned to do about the situation. Upon hearing her answer, it took every bit of self-control he had not to drag her to the airport and send her home to her parents and safety. Her plan was to once again confront him and "tell him what she thought of him and his behavior."
Given the circumstances, that was the functional equivalent of putting a loaded gun to her head and pulling the trigger. Sticking with the runaway train analogy it, it was the equivalent of announcing that she was going to charge the train and yell at it.
Despite Marc telling her that would only provoke an attack, she insisted that is what she was going to do. All she could see was her own outrage and not the danger of the situation. Despite his past of dealing with crime and violence, she thought Marc was overstating the danger. Finally, Marc was able to extract a promise from her that if -- by some odd happenstance -- she were ever to find herself alone with him when he had been drinking she'd not try that strategy.
In fact, she should run ... fiercely.
This advice was especially relevant as that particular 'class' was advanced enough in the program to be attending school at night. Marc also told his girlfriend to go to the school administration the next afternoon and explain what was going on. She did. Fortunately, the president of the school was a woman, who immediately recognized the danger. She called in the female classmate and confirmed the situation. Once again the classmate was told not to confront the male student -- especially while alone. Again the advice fell on anger deaf ears.
Not two nights later, the obsessed student wasn't in class. A lot of ribbing and teasing occurred about the classmate's "boyfriend' not being present was done by the other students. Again she informed anyone who would listen how she was going to verbally "let him have it." At the end of the night the students and staff either left or went to their offices, leaving Marc's girlfriend and the classmate as the remaining few.
Finishing up before her friend, Marc's girlfriend walked out into the parking lot. Where she was hailed from the shadows by the obsessed male student.
He was waiting in a deserted parking lot.
He was drunk.
He was asking about the classmate
He wanted to 'talk' to her.
Thinking quickly Marc's girlfriend said that 'yes, the classmate was still there, but that she had to go somewhere.' In fact, 'he should stay there and she'd go in and get her.' This was good thinking. Realize that Marc's girlfriend, although not the primary target could have become the target of his rage. That's why she needed to get out of that parking lot too.
Going back inside she grabbed her friend and informed her that the danger she had dismissed was waiting for her outside. And if she walked out that door alone, she would be raped -- or at least physically assaulted. Fortunately a male student named Art was still there (a 6' 5" monster from Brooklyn). Marc's girlfriend explained what was outside and he agreed to run interference. The three of them exited. Although the obsessed classmate tried to talk to her the classmate confirmed Marc's girlfriend's story of her 'having to leave' and quickly drove away. Art, being friendly and jovial and under the guise of talking to the drunk, gave both women cover to safely escape.
The next day incident was reported to the president of the school and the obsessed student was transferred out of the class. Although nothing went onto his record, he was also 'told' he was under close observation for the remainder of the semester (which fortunately was both very short and graduation). Shortly there after, being in different states resolved any further problems.
Now officially speaking nothing happened(2). This story doesn't end with a woman being raped or a drunk, would-be rapist being put in the hospital. And in our book, that makes it a raging success. No matter what else: She didn't get raped!
Furthermore she walked away from that situation with an understanding that no matter what she thought of a situation, it's important to pull back from one's own emotions and take a look at it from a different perspective.
As you read the following points, keep this story in mind and see where the ideas we're talking about apply to the story.
Don't Put Yourself in a Situation Where You Could
At first glance, this is the biggest "NO DUH!" statement we could make. And yet, it is something that the nearly 100,000 US women -- who are raped every year -- didn't manage! So obviously this idea needs to be looked at more closely.
Realize that rape -- no matter what kind -- doesn't just come out of nowhere.
Like all crime, it is a process! The process takes time to develop! Certain conditions must be met. Learn to recognize what they look like so when you see someone trying to develop them, you'll know this situation ISN'T normal -- nor is it safe. There are certain conditions that ONLY exist together when things aren't kosher. The better you are at situational awareness, the easier it will be to spot a developing situation.
Realize that the situation can develop in one night OR as in the case of the story you've just read, it can take months to slowly escalate to the point of crisis. Believe it or not, those are the hardest ones to spot coming because often the woman's anger, emotions and suppositions about the situation blind her to the developing danger. Like the woman in the story, her outrage over what she thought the situation still was, didn't let her see what it had become.
We've talked about the rapist profile elsewhere. Simply stated, there are certain people that you don't want to be alone with.
This goes double if he's been paying undo interest towards you.
This goes triple if he's been drinking
This goes quadruple if you've been drinking.
Be especially concerned if you 'accidentally' run into him in these conditions. We cannot stress this idea strongly enough. These conditions combined with isolation are the green light for rape.
Realize the fact that because rape is a process that takes time to develop, YOU have the opportunity to recognize the developing danger and take steps to avoid it. And if you can't avoid the situation going physical, you've bought yourself time enough time to mentally prepare to do what you must in order to prevent being raped.
We cannot stress enough the importance of giving yourself time to maneuver and change your mindset. If you don't give yourself that, the chances of you avoiding/preventing a rape are about the same as you successfully head butting that runaway train barreling down on you.
If you have even the slightest doubt about someone stay in public with him. Do NOT go off alone with him ... and by this we especially mean don't accept offers of rides in his car from him. (One of the draw backs of being an independent woman is that you have to turn down rides of convenience that could get you raped). Oh BTW, going over alone to a couple of guys apartment alone does NOT constitute safety and not being isolated (you're now isolated with TWO guys).
If someone you know is giving off weird vibes, the same rule about staying in public with him applies. Understand the significance of fringe areas and why they are dangerous. Weird vibes + fringe area= bad juju.
Also realize -- in a house full of people -- you can put yourself into a fringe area with a potential rapist by simply being isolated in a room with him. Whether you willingly go in there together or he follows you, you're in a fringe area. If you sense something is wrong, GET BACK TO THE GROUP!
A game you can play to teach yourself about fringe areas is, as you go about your daily business, begin to notice when you are in situations where it would take at least 30 seconds for someone to get to you. Something a simple as glancing around a mall parking lot as you are walking to your car can begin to acquaint you with how to spot fringe areas. This skill goes beyond just rape, it very much an overall personal safety issue. Also realize that walls are NOT your friend. Although technically you are only a few feet away from someone on the other side of a wall, that wall will prevent them from knowing that they need to come to you aid -- especially if there is music playing. (See why we say you can be in a fringe area even though there are people in the house?)
On the other hand, we don't want you to be paranoid. Realize one of the nice things about being alone in a big parking lot is that you ARE alone. It's not what-if someone creepy shows up, it's that there are no creepy people there. The same time that it would take for someone to come to your assistance is also the same time it would take for a bad guy to get close to you. But that's only IF you let him. A nice thing about big deserted spaces is that you have lots of room to move to keep someone away from you.
Do NOT Incapacitate Yourself
The basic rule of thumb to avoid rapes, drunk driving charges, destroyed cars and getting killed in accidents is NEVER get hammered any place where you aren't planning to spend the night. And don't ever spend the night somewhere that you don't know and trust everyone there.
And -- 'Oh, he's cool' does not constitute trusting someone.
If someone is around who has certain characteristics common to rapists, then as much as you may not like the idea, getting crawling on your lips drunk that evening is off the schedule of events.
In Marc's old neighborhood there was an attitude of "Don't make it easier to kill you than to leave you alive, you won't like the results." In the same vein, "Don't get drunk with a rapist, you won't like the results."
Is it okay to get a good buzz working? Well, even if we tell you no, we know you're going to do it, so that's not the issue. It's knowing to keep your buzz -- if not in public -- then at least in the company of your friends.
Watch For It Going Weird
When it comes to rape, everyone and his sister will tell you to 'trust your feelings.' And yet those 100,000 women who are raped every year in the US, seem to have missed that oft repeated point.
Or maybe the point isn't being put across in a way that is as understandable as it needs to be.
This is a rather long section, but it has to be in order to convey, perhaps the most important idea, to keep you from being raped. And that is it's more than just trusting your feelings, it's finding out if they are accurate (and doing something about it) before you get raped.
First off, we like to poke fun at people who say "You must always be aware!" Aware of WHAT? A keen fashion sense is awareness. So too is noticing that guy over there has a really nice butt. While we're at it, so is seeing that blonde over there is giving your boyfriend the eye. All of those are types of awareness. However, those won't save you from getting raped. And yet again and again you are told "be aware."
On the other hand -- and this is a very legitimate counter point by women -- is they don't want to live their lives in constant fear and paranoia. Which face it, "all men are potential rapists" and "You must always be aware" does come across as promoting paranoia. Basically, encouraging women to constantly exist in a vague and uneasy awareness, gives credence to these women's attitude. And why the advice is so often disregarded.
Our attitude is awareness without knowledge is paranoia. That's why we ask "Aware of WHAT?"
What are the specific danger signs that a woman must -- not constantly be on guard against -- but look for in certain kinds of situations? If she doesn't see them, then relax and go back to what you are doing. (Gee, a deserted parking lot, that means NOBODY IS THERE! Then relax, nobody is there to attack you.)
On the other hand, if the danger signals are there, then DON'T ignore, dismiss or negate them. It's time to stop thinking a certain way start thinking another way. Most of all, it's time to change your behavior. (A deserted parking lot except for the guy who has been trying to get you to go out with him and who is obviously drunk is no longer safe).
The profile of characteristics common to rapists and the Five Stages of Violent Crime will give you a lot of helpful knowledge to base a realistic and practical set of standards as to what kind of dangerous signs you need to be looking for. If you see them, then there is a problem. But, guess what? If you don't see them, then it's time to shift back to your other kind of awareness ... like scoping out the cute butts in the vicinity.
Our second problem with "trust your feelings" is this: Who doesn't get confused by society's weirdness?
It's a BIG and confusing world. And face it, we deal with people all the time that we're uneasy about. Let's see who can make you feel uncomfortable dealing with them. The skanky bum who looks like he's about to try to pan handle you? How about that ethnic guy who's leering at you? That weird geeky guy who fixes your computer? The Goth chick with the purple and black hair and who-knows-how-many-unseen-piercings who's sneering at you? That flannel shirted, baseball hat wearing truck driver standing next to you in line? Do they freak you out? Do you feel uncomfortable because you don't know how to talk to them?
Face it, it's really easy to be at a loss at how to deal with all the different kinds of people you're going to run across. And sooner or later, you're going to come across someone who makes you uncomfortable. Among city dwellers, every day of our lives our feelings of unease and discomfort are triggered every day.
And yet somehow trusting this feeling is supposed to save you from rape? How?
Let's start out with the fact that there is a BIG difference between 'weird' and 'dangerous.' The barking moonbat who wants to talk to you about how the CIA is broadcasting microwave mind control beams directly into his head, really isn't dangerous. On the other hand the classmate who is obsessing on you and always trying to talk and touch you is. So too is a date who reveals himself to be a 'mean drunk' or begins to exhibit more and more of the characteristics common to rapists.
While we're making this list, add in someone who is too pushy about getting to sex isn't a good thing either. Remember what we said in the Safe Dating page and the Bonding Process, it's a two way interview ... an interview that you can decide that he has failed. And if you decide someone has failed it spectacularly, it's time to exit.
Here's our point. It ISN'T just about your feelings, it's about what is happening.
Trusting your feelings isn't enough. That needs to be augmented by watching for if the person developing the conditions he needs in order to attack you.
See unlike the actual attack, developing these conditions isn't obvious. And that is why so many people blow it. It isn't just that they don't trust their feelings, it's that they are hesitant to act on those feelings until a blatant danger becomes manifest. Well, by that time, it's too late.
But here's something you need to know. Although the
danger signals of a developing attack don't come with
flashing lights and sirens:
1) They are very real and observable. 2) They are both knowable and easily recognizable once you know them. 3) They will ALWAYS show up for a pending attack. 4) The time to act is NOW
5) If you act to derail the process in its development, you won't have
to use violence to keep from being raped.
The time to act on your feelings is when you see the small signs.
To give you an idea of what we're talking about imagine that you're driving on a freeway looking for an exit. The reason that most people 'trusting their feelings' doesn't work is that they aren't looking for the road signs. They are actually looking for the exit. They're speeding down the highway saying to themselves 'I know there's a red building at the exit I want.' Even though they may have a 'feeling' they are getting close, when they go driving by that building they'll realize they've missed the exit.
Sticking with the driving analogy, 'trusting you feelings' works when you know about road signs. It's not the exit, but that sign tells you the exit is coming up. Not only is that sign is miles before the actual exit, but when you get the feeling you are getting close to the exit, you start looking for the road signs. When you start getting a bad feeling about a situation, you don't start looking for the 'red building' of danger, by that time it's too late. When you start getting uneasy feelings you start looking for road signs that danger is down the road.
This gives you time and space to maneuver your way out of being attacked.
The third, problem about 'trust your feelings' is all too often personal benefit causes women to blow off the danger signs. This is what we mean when we say that the danger signs are often ignored, dismissed or minimized.
The warnings lights are flashing and the bells are ringing, but the woman is having too good of a time or is getting too much benefit out of the circumstances to pay attention. This attitude could be summed up as "Danger signals? I'm having too much fun to worry about danger signals!" Not only is she on her way to a wreck, but every time she sees a warning sign she actually speeds up, so as not to be able to read the sign.
If this sounds like blaming, our answer is "If the shoe fits." To begin with there's a big difference between blame and responsibility. Second of all, a whole lot of people use blame to justify their own bad behavior. Having said that, we know how easy it is to decide that it's just too much fun and continue with behavior that is heading you towards a wreck. Since our approach is to help you avoid wrecks (instead of making you feel better about having been in one) then this behavior needs to be addressed for what it is.
Now the bad news, making the "I'm having too much fun" decision IS a form of trusting your feelings.
It's the feeling of selfishness. It's the feeling
that this is fun and you want more, so you ignore the
danger signs. If
a) you're not willing to slow down on your 'fun' when you see the
b) you think it's other people's responsibility not to do you wrong
while you're having fun (including putting yourself into diminished
the there's not a whole lot anyone can do to keep you from getting raped ... including yourself.
Yeah, it ruins your fun, but if things start looking weird, it's time to set aside your fun and pay attention to those signs that are niggling for your attention.
It's amazing how often life boils down to knowing which feelings to trust.
The reason why the drunk obsessive in the parking lot was so dangerous is that he didn't consciously know he was there to commit a sexual assault.
How's that for a BS sounding statement?
Having admitted that, it's still true. Realize that in many instances a would-be rapist is in a state that is like stepping on the gas and the brake at the same time. He is at war with himself, one half is obsessed with sexually having you, while another part is saying "STOP! This ain't right."
Here's where things get both ugly and confusing. Being sexually interested in someone is very human. So in that sense, it's right. However, being 'sexually obsessed' is too much of a good thing. In fact, it has become wrong. This is why use the gas and brake pedal analogy. Although wanting sex is normal, he also knows the degree which he wants it is wrong and that he can't act on it. But, that doesn't help him stop wanting it.
Think about this for a second. Have you ever wanted something that you know was wrong?. What did you do?
This gas vs. brake pedal conflict is often resolved by a very specific solution -- a solution that allows the person to have both. You should also know this solution is almost entirely unique to violence -- and extremely common to acquaintance rape(3). When you're talking about violence in general, we refer to this solution as "The-Accidentally-On-Purpose-Attack-Set-Up."
Shockingly enough, when we're talking about rape it's called the "The-Accidentally-On-Purpose-Rape-Set-Up" (TAOPuRSU pronounced 'tao-pursue').
Here's the catch. The person who is engaging in TAOPuRSU can both perfectly set up the conditions for rape and NEVER realize that he's doing it. We're not talking about lying about it after the fact either, HE doesn't realize he's setting up a rape -- even though he's doing it by the numbers.
To understand TAOPuRSU you must first realize the difference between conscious motivation and unconscious motivation. Even though every decision he makes is 'conscious' he doesn't realize that they have unconscious motivations. Motivations that are directing him to a certain goal. A goal that he is not consciously aware of. To him it just looks like a series of innocent decisions. He doesn't see they are taking him to create the circumstances for giving himself permission to attack.
Let's, for example, look at the classmate ending up drunk in the parking lot. Now this was, as we said, a by the numbers set up for an attack. But information Marc collected indicated that the classmate had been unconsciously doing a TAOPuRSU, but not consciously planning an attack.
The following is a model based on known facts and filling in the blanks. (Art kept an eye on the guy afterwards gathering this information). TAOPuRSU probably developed something like this. A known fact is the situation that caused him to miss school was legitimate business. Having free time on his hands, he'd gone out to get some food. Food led to a couple of drinks, those lead to a couple more. This, he admitted in later statements. Now we get into filling in the blanks. Odd are, once he was good and buzzed, he conveniently 'realized' that school was about to let out. It suddenly seemed like a 'really good idea' to go talk to the female classmate. This, in spite of the reality that she was furious with him. He probably thought he was going to apologize and plead his case.
Without consciously being aware of it, he had gone out of his way to set up conditions to both lower his inhibitions via alcohol and put himself into a position to attack the female classmate. What's more, although it would never consciously cross his intoxicated mind, he'd also put himself into a position where HE could feel justified for physically attacking her because SHE became verbally aggressive. Her anger at him would have exploded and given him the provocation he needed to physically attack. And the reason is, according to this drunken, self-rationalizing brain, SHE would have attacked him first.
At this junction many rape advocates will be frothing at the mouth that it doesn't matter that he wasn't conscious of his intent. The fact that subconsciously was there means the rapist should be strung up by his balls. (And then they wonder why people don't listen to them).
However, the real problem with TAOPuRSU is it masks intent even from the person doing it! And if he doesn't know that he's up to no good, how can you spot it? The situation isn't obvious because he's unconsciously moving towards attacking you. There's no obvious deceit and you are probably caught up in the emotions of the moment yourself. This is a classic situation where people tell you to trust your feelings, but we'll tell you the situation isn't just going weird, it's already arrived there on a pogo stick.
The good news is that like situations where there is willful deceit and intent to attack, even with TAOPuRSU, there is both non-verbal leakage and the development of the condition for an attack. The leopard can't change its spots and criminal attacks HAVE to pass through these stages.
This is where we get back to our version 'trust your feelings' -- you'll sense that something isn't quite right, so instead of looking for something that is obviously wrong (the exit with the red building) start looking for the road signs that say destination trouble is coming up fast.
Who Says You Can't Lie?
During our Women's Self-Defense programs we often encounter an interesting phenomenon. During the conversations about their past experiences we routinely come across women who are embarrassed that they didn't get raped.
Although that isn't exactly how they look at it, in our eyes their attitude is the same thing. See, these women are embarrassed because when faced with a pending rape/sexual assault -- instead of becoming a combination of Wonder Woman/ Super Girl/ Laura Croft and delivering a whirlwind of blows to their would-be rapist -- they tricked their way out of being raped. Amazingly enough, they are ashamed that they took this strategy.
There's just one problem with this shame ... what matters is that they didn't get raped, not how they prevented it.
To us, what is important is that they didn't get raped. In our book that is a victory! High fives all around, you won that one.
The simple truth is that no matter what these women believed about their competence, power and ability to take care of themselves, in the face of immediate physical threat by an overwhelming force, they did the math and realized they needed to come up with something more reliable than becoming a comic book heroine. And they did so successfully.
You go girl.
Realize that whatever social prohibitions you may have accepted about lying and deception, the criminal and violent use deception all the time. If they're trying to deceive, threaten or harm you, why shouldn't you use deception to prevent that?
One of the hardest things to do is come out of your own lizard brain response to a situation that is taking an unusual turn and assess it in a different light. Once you realize that the situation is no longer what you thought it was, (whether a date, normal interaction or conflict) you can begin to counter the threat by -- although not obvious -- none the less effective measure.
To help you to be more effective in your deception let us give you an important idea we learned form John Steinbeck's Cannery Row. And this is: The best deception is one the person you are deceiving can easily understand. In the book there is a character named "Doc." Doc loves to walk. He would without any other reason than this love take 30 or 40 mile walks. What he learned is that if people asked him why he was walking if he told them the truth they would become nervous, unsure and think of him as a 'weirdo' . So the strategy he adopted was to to give them an explanation they could immediately understand -- and not think about. If people asked him why he was in the middle of a long walk, he would tell them that it was a bet. Any unease or suspicion about his 'odd' behavior immediately vanished and people readily accepted his odd behavior.
So how can you use this?
Let us for example, say that in the midst of hot and heavy making out your date begins to become too aggressive and you decide that "No maybe this isn't such a good idea after all." Suddenly announcing that you're in the middle of your period so you're not going to have sex with him isn't really believable. (why didn't you mention it earlier?) This is where the idea of "no means no" is often proven to be good in theory but hard to put into practice. You're telling a larger, stronger, probably drunk and definitely horny person -- who's deeply engaged in a kind of thought process that doesn't deal very well with being told 'no' -- NO. And you're being deceitful about it by claiming its your period.
On the other hand you saying "I have to pee" is more believable (especially if you have been drinking). Explain the need to pee is somewhat pressing and you'll both enjoy yourself more if your bladder isn't complaining. Become adamant. If he still objects, offer to pee in his hands. (thereby giving him an unpleasant option). The promise (that you intend to break) is that you will be right back. Then get up and leave the room. Amazingly enough you're either going to forget to come back or while in the bathroom you receive an emergency phone call that requires you to rush out of the house (or even climb out the bathroom window if you have to).
The key is to use deception to get out of his immediate reach where he can control your options. And as long as he believes that you'll come back he has no reason to try and stop you. By the time he realizes something is wrong, you're gone.
Do NOT Use Ineffective
President Theodore Roosevelt gave us this bit of wisdom: Don't hit at all if it is honorably possible to avoid hitting; but never hit soft.
Entirely too many women fail to achieve this goal. When being pressed by a male, they often retaliate by striking, not only first, but ineffectively. In doing so they actually initiate the physical violence that leads to rape. We actually dedicated an entire page to this idea. We don't object to using force to stop a rape, what we object to is not breaking his jaw.
Your Goal Is NOT to Fight, It
Is To Escape
In fact, let us add some other things that you should NOT have on your To-Do list:
1) You are not there to punish him for disrespecting you
2) You are not there to correct his behavior
3) You are not there to make him feel like less of a man for misbehaving
4) You are not there to teach him a lesson about messing with you
5) You are not there to extract revenge for past wrongs done to you. 6) You are not there to vent your anger
7) You are not there to prove your 'Right' to behave anyway you want. 8) You are not there to build your self-esteem by beating him up
9) You are not there to give him a piece of your mind AFTER you've beat
In fact, at the moment of attack your ONLY priority is getting out of the situation where you could be successfully raped. Until you've achieved that goal, everything else is of secondary importance -- including your anger and emotions. We know it's not how it is commonly done in 'civilized society' but these aren't civilized circumstances. You are in physical danger. Your physical safety comes first, then after you've avoided being hit by a runaway train, worry about your emotional comfort.
Call In Extra Help
We have a saying: A big qualifier of 'truth' is that you can find variations of it in many places. What we are about to you to tell you applies to rape. It also applies to stalking. What's more, we tell men the same thing about when another man attacks them. So realize what we're going to tell you applies not to just rape, but to most assaults.
If the guy didn't think he could
take you, he wouldn't attack
you in the first place.
What's more, there's a good chance that he's right. He can physically overwhelm you if you try to fight him. (And yes, there is a HUGE difference between self-defense and fighting). This unpleasant truth needs to be a MAJOR factor in your strategy of what to do to stop rape.
Let us ask you something, when was the last time you were in a knock-down, drag out brawl? When was the last time you threw someone a beating? When was the last time you had to drop someone with one punch because he was acting up?
If you answered 'never' to any and all of these questions, then we must ask you what makes you think you're going to be able to not only fight, a bigger stronger male, but defeat him? Most men are incapable of effectively fighting another man into submission and most physical violence between them is more threat display in nature. That is to say it is NOT designed to incapacitate or kill an opponent. So realize right now, that competence at using physical force isn't something that you just do. In fact, we have huge sections on self-defense, martial arts, street-fighting and defensive tactics on this Website. All of which are studies on the subject of effective use of physical force.
The reason we tell you this is that it is critical that you recognize the NEED to 'call in the cavalry.' We often tell people: Do not run from danger, run towards safety. Another saying is "Head for the lights and the noise." That is where people are, and where there are people there are those who will stop the rapist in his tracks. Remember, rape needs isolation!
It is a dirty little secret that can only exist in isolation.
Remember the story about Marc's ex and the classmates? Not only did she help her friend, but she called in the help of the biggest, meanest dude available. (Art immediately spotted the danger and swung into action to keep the obsessed classmate not only away from the female, but there in the parking lot when she had left). In the same vein, she also called in the school administration.
The obsessed student might be able to physically overwhelm the female student, but he couldn't win against her, Marc's girlfriend (and by extension Marc), Art, the school administration, the police, the court system and prison.
Is why you need to call in help beginning to make sense?
It doesn't matter if you use crowds and public to avoid the possibility of rape, escape to them to avoid rape or run to them after successfully stop rape or call in help after rape, do NOT try to handle it all by yourself. Call in the cavalry.
Return to top
1) In professional kitchens communication and physical contact is a safety requirement. You neither want to turn around into a knife or stab someone when you turn around. Realize that you're in an environment where everyone is very focused, moving very fast while holding (and carrying) sharp objects, hot items and boiling liquids. A light touch on your shoulder tells you not to move. As does terms like "behind you" and "coming through." Therefore a higher degree of communication and touching occurs in a kitchen between co-workers ... even so, this guy was over the top. Return to Text
2) Oh sure he was transferred to a different class. But that was for 'being on school property while intoxicated.' It just so happened to have the added benefit of getting an obsessive person away from the object of his obsession. But that never appeared on any paperwork Return to Text
3) Although they occasionally apply to property crime, it is far, far less likely. The reason it is more common to physical violence is that humans tend to have prohibitions about committing violence on one another. Getting drunk lessens this inhibition to act. Return to Text
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Turning Fear Into Power
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Surviving Workplace Violence
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Special Bonus Feature
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In the Gravest Extreme
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Judicious Use of Deadly Force
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