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If you willingly put yourself
into high risk
situations you cannot rely on the social norms
-- norms that ordinarily keep you safe --
to protect you. You've stepped outside those
boundaries and you're surrounded by
other people who have done the same.
High Risk Behavior and Rape
On this page:
Anger | Putting Yourself Into Dangerous Situations... | Danger, Responsibility and Safety | Sexual Power
Remember our definition of high risk behavior? Any behavior that puts you into circumstances where violence is probable.
That's not a judgment, that's a descriptor. It describes circumstances where violence is likely to occur. And yet, it is the most taboo topic when it comes to you not being raped.
The problem is any attempt to look at the subject objectively is
often met with ferocious resistance. This resistance comes from three
1) Advocates who will argue for your 'right' to put yourself into danger
2) Women who are benefiting and enjoying the behavior
3) Women who have been raped and automatically assume you're blaming
them for what happened.
Putting it bluntly, this is a great way to get more women raped.
There's nothing like refusing to allow any discussion about a critical components that routinely lead to rape to make sure more sexual assaults happen.
We're going to break that taboo about not talking about pre-assault behaviors and high risk situations. As we stated elsewhere, when it comes to rape, our goal is prevention.
The following subjects are all germane to different roads that lead to rape. You do have the ability to keep from being raped, but that is going to take a little preplanning on your part.
2,000 years ago Horace wrote "Anger is a form of short madness."
Now modern science has proved that statement to be true. Anger is a temporary form of insanity. An emotional state that blinds you to anything but what is going on inside you. Unfortunately in the grip of anger it is easy to cross over into being aggressive and provoking an attack. It is critical to realize how your anger can make you violent, even though you never physically touched someone.
Putting Yourself In Dangerous Situations
Without The Correct Mindset
When it comes to rape prevention, there is NO bigger can of worms than this subject. That is because inherent to many women's attitude is the belief "It can't happen to me."
The attitude that it can't happen to you brings a thunderin' herd of complicating factors. Why should you bother to take precautions if it won't happen anyway? Do you wear garlic around your neck to keep away the vampires? Then why worry about being raped -- especially if you're having a good time?
Accompanying the belief that it can't happen to you are many other assumptions, such as you're untouchable, that even though you're breaking the rules that others will behave, that you can handle yourself, that you're in control, that even though someone does uncool things he won't do them to you, that even if things do go wrong you'll be able to stop him and that you are conscious aware of everything that is going on sexually.
These attitudes leave a woman especially vulnerable ... not only to being raped, but actually magnify the trauma. While there is no such thing as a small trauma, certain pre-assault attitudes make it worse. We liken this increase in trauma to the injury of falling into an empty pool vs. high diving into the same empty pool.
Here's our point. Yes, you can have fun. Yes, you can live a life without paranoia. Yes you can be an assertive and empowered woman. And yes you can live a life without getting raped. But that is going to take a little work on your part.
Danger, Responsibility and Safety
As we've mentioned many times elsewhere, one of the hardest things about self-defense is shifting gears out of a emotional state and realizing that the danger has become physical. Simply stated most people do not live lives where physical violence is a common occurrence. We don't expect to be assaulted over what we say or do. When that happens, instead of accepting that our actions contributed to the situation, we seek to assign blame. The problem with this approach is that while it protects our world view, it doesn't teach us how to maneuver safely in the real world.
A large part of personal safety is first recognizing that our actions have power -- for both good and bad. The next part is recognizing when a situation is heading towards violence and shifting our priorities accordingly.
In this site we spend a great deal of time talking about safe dating and how to get out of being raped. We also talk about understanding sex in the context of an extremely strong drive, a process that is not just for the sex. This is extremely important because many people have misconceptions about rape.
The drive we just mentioned is extremely primitive, wildly passionate (and romantic) as well as being a vital part of our long term psychological balance and stability. Saying that this is 'a powerful force' is like saying the Titanic sprung a small leak ... a massive understatement. This drive has been the obsession of poets, artists, moralists, freaks and perverts through out history. It is also an area that is strongly addressed by cultural protocols and religious/ethical dictates.
As we grow and mature both men and women tend to learn how to cope with this drive. By this we mean socially, in our relationships and within ourselves. However, young females upon discovering this new and fascinating power they have often use it unwisely.
We are not going to moralize or lecture about this. And we encourage parents not to do so either. In the grip of this powerful drive social prohibitions really don't help. Both young males and females can 'think' with their genitals -- and this drive is stronger than you saying "Don't do it."
Keeping silent about the subject and hoping that young people will find their way through this period without getting in trouble is also a pipedream. Therefore we encourage parents to acquaint themselves with the issues we cover in this site and then explain to the young people in their lives how to engage in responsible behavior and how to stay safe while having fun.
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