Are You Prey for a Rapist? Part I of II

By Kellene Bishop

I’m going to share with you some traits that rape predators look for in an ideal target and how you can counter their efforts.  This is NOT an all inclusive summary, it’s merely a highlight of a few of the considerations I teach in my Women of Caliber self-defense course.  Understand that my pointing out a physical trait does not mean to say that you should alter your dress or hair, etc.  But you should indeed be sure that if you posses some of these traits that by arming yourself with the knowledge and the tools to successfully fend off an assault, you eliminate all odds of you being raped. 

  1. Photo c/o stalecoffee.blogspot.com/
    Photo c/o stalecoffee.blogspot.com/

    You are a target to a rapist if you have long hair, a pony tail, or some way for the psychopath to control the rest of your body by pulling your head.  If your hair can easily be grabbed, you pose as an ideal target.  Now, here are the facts of things.  I refuse to change my personal appearance just because there are scum bags out there.  I won’t let them intrude on my freedoms in this manner for one minute.  This is why I also exercise my freedom to be armed with a suitable firearm and other weapons that are easily accessible to me.  While they are pulling my hair, I’m pulling my firearm from my side or belly holster—end of story.  

  2. Your clothing makes an ideal target if it is easily removable.  Some rapists even carry scissors to aid them in this effort.  Again, dress as you will, but if you’re going to wear something that will pop off with the flick of a finger, I suggest you either quickly become a master sumo wrestler or you become familiar with flicking YOUR finger on a ready trigger. Also, keep in mind that involuntary nudity really disrupts a woman’s ability to think clearly.  Don’t worry though.  You don’t have to practice random acts of public nudity to become immune to this vulnerability.  Simply putting your mind through a legitimate mental exercise of what you will do if your clothes are violently removed from you is a HUGE asset.  Most women forbid themselves to even think of such a thing.  As a result, their mind turns off if it happens.  This is NOT what you want to have happen.  Stay focused on your rehearsed self-defense and determination and not on the spontaneous breach of modesty and you will very likely survive mostly unscathed.
  3. Photo c/o smarthome.com
    Photo c/o smarthome.com

    Do NOT disengage from your environment.  Rapists look for women who are on their cell phones, walking, loaded down with bags, etc.  Such women are typically disengaged from their surroundings.  Not only can you not afford such a state of cluelessness for your own safety, but you’re useless to helping others as well if you indulge in this manner.  This isn’t about being paranoid.  This is about being aware.  I never get into my car absentmindedly.  I carry my keys with my hand ready on the trigger of my red-dyed pepper spray.  I am aware and ready.  If I’m going to be on the cell phone, I’m still mindful of my surroundings—to the point that my friends and family ask that I call them back when I can be focused on THEIR conversation.  A quick chit chat is not worth my safety and they know and respect that.  I never go out to my car at night or walk the dogs mentally disengaged.  I’m particularly focused when I’m in a parking lot of ANY kind, day or night.  While most reported rapes occur between 3:00 a.m. to 7:30 a.m., it doesn’t diminish my level of awareness at high noon.  Any person aware of their surroundings also comes across as a confident, ready woman.  Shallow useless excuses of a man are always repulsed by such an image.  

  4. Remember, rapists are cowards.  They are specifically preying on what they deem to be an EASY target.  As such, the majority of them do NOT have a gun on them (only 2%). Of those that do carry a gun or any other kind of a weapon, they rarely expect to have to use it as they rarely expect a woman to be armed with anything more significant than a random right hook or pepper spray, let alone the knowledge, skill, and willingness to USE a weapon.  Statistically assailants will give up and flee when confronted with a determined fight.Do NOT fall for the ridiculous notion that submission is safer.  It’s not.  Even if you aren’t killed during a rape, do you really want to end up pregnant with the child of a rapist?  Do you really want to have to corrupt every intimate relationship you will have thereafter because of the rape?  Regardless of your moral standing, I assure you that a rape is NEVER just sex.  It’s violent.  It’s a nightmare that will take superhuman strength to heal from.  I’d much rather use my superhuman strength to prevent a rape than to have to heal from such an incident throughout the rest of my life—wouldn’t you?
  5. Photo c/o Getty Image
    Photo c/o Getty Image

    When you’re fighting for your life, 5 minutes can seem like forever.  One of the exercises I highly recommend you doing is to punch at a pillow, mattress, dummy, or punching bag non-stop with all the fiery will you can muster for an entire timed five minutes.  Keep the fighting at a high, fevered pace.  Work up to this if you have to.  Most women are not accustomed to such a workout.  Sure women can run for 6 miles without so much as a sweat, but fighting for their lives with arms and feet moving feverishly for 5 minutes is a whole other matter.

Part II of II in the “Are You Prey for a Rapist” series requires some specific instructions and some photos to aid in that effort.  So tune in tomorrow to learn of a highly effective exercise and defense method for you to use in rape prevention!

Copyright 2009 Kellene Bishop. All rights reserved.  You are welcome to repost this information so long as it is credited to Kellene Bishop.

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Copyright 2009 Kellene Bishop. All rights reserved.
You are welcome to repost this information so long as it is credited to Kellene Bishop.  

What Not To Wear… when learning how to shoot a firearm

What Not To Wear

Who Not to Take

What Not To Say…when learning how to shoot a firearm.

“But I don’t want my husband to teach me how to shoot a gun.”

Yup. I’ve heard that line a LOT in my years of firearm self-defense training.  And it usually also comes with a “men aren’t patient enough.”  While I wholeheartedly disagree with the overall patience complaint from women toward men, I do wholeheartedly agree that learning how to shoot from your husband, father, son, boyfriend, or even a male instructor is not the wisest choice a woman could make. 

Sorry ladies. This is not going to be a male bashing blog.  In fact, I learned the majority of what I know about self-defense exclusively from men – especially, my expert marksman husband and a couple of patient Marine friends of mine. But I have learned what women really need in order to be properly instructed in the competent handling of a firearm and how they need to learn it from my female students. This bit of information will outline some of the points of difference between a woman and a man in learning how to competently use a firearm.

Because firearms are stereotypically such a “manly” thing, men need to stop trying to introduce them to the women as a means of making the female tougher.  Women don’t want to strip themselves of their kind and gentle virtues. That’s part of what makes them women.  One of the primary reasons a woman has any desire to learn how to use a firearm is a result of her fierce instinct to take care of her children and loved ones.  That’s what an instructor needs to address.  As such, women are more apt to learn how to handle themselves with a firearm in order to ensure that they are able to maintain peace and order in their lives. 

Men need to understand that women are physiologically more sensitive to the deep bass sound than men are. This is why you are more likely to have a car banging the bass sound with the windows rolled down accompanied by a male driver rather than a female. When instructed by males, they are seemingly oblivious to this affect.  And if they are unaware of it, it registers to a female as something freakish, wrong, or inept.  As women we’re used to running an entire household, annual budgets, creative menu planning, power social networking, puke, pooh, blood, emotional breakdown intervention, mental manipulation, calendaring, multi-tasking, etc.  We women definitely have the fortitude to be good at whatever we set our minds to.  Regardless, the new sound of a round exploding in the middle of our hands is not something we’re initially oriented to handle.  We women are simply more sensitive to it, and boy does it rock our world—but not in the way it does for the head banger rock hard males.  The initial, uncommon sounds of a firearm going off, even a small caliber .22, often rattles a woman to the core literally.  It is something that women have to get used to. And trying to do so when they are in the midst of the company of a man that they care about, would like to make proud, and consider themselves a partner to is NOT the ideal scenario. Holding a firearm for the first time is tough enough.  Men, I don’t recommend having the special female in your life try to do it around you.  It’s just plain stressful. The woman is usually trying to push through an instinct that has been fostered all of their lives that a firearm is a big, bad, scary thing.  They don’t need the added pressure of not making you happy, pushing your patience, or doing something that’s not technically correct as well.    

9mm-gun-casingWhile men are occasionally whacked on the head, arms, or elsewhere with a loose casing, they typically think that’s pretty cool—a sign of competence and “really shooting.”  I doubt they would think this way however, if the hot casing were to make it down a man’s pants and lodge itself in the family jewels.  Unfortunately women rarely get the advice to refrain from wearing low cut, scoop necked or open necked tops when a man takes them shooting so as not to get an unpleasant and uninvited hot visitor in their bra. Only another woman would think to caution them against inappropriate clothing.  Oh, and the make-up and jewelry.  You may want to refrain from wearing them when you go shooting as well.  The gun powder that you get on your face and hands is definitely not something the jewelers or department store manufacturers considered when they make their beauty and warranty claims.

Women don’t need to restrict themselves to a particular caliber either. While there is a great deal of viable evidence that a particular caliber has more stopping power than another, the stopping power is useless if you can’t handle the firearm.  Just work up to a caliber and grip that feels comfortable to you.  Gun ranges usually have guns to rent and test out so that you don’t make an expensive purchasing error.  Use such conveniences for all it’s worth until you’re completely comfortable with a particular grip, caliber, slide, trigger pull, and action. If you are only comfortable with a .22 caliber, it’s sure better than nothing.  A lot better.  Most would be criminals wouldn’t know one caliber from another anyway.  All they see is that you have a gun, or that you’re using a gun.  Period.

Women do not need to sacrifice or hide their femininity and fashion sense in order to appreciate the protection and peace of mind that learning how to use a firearm can give them. No, women do not need to get rid of their long nails for shooting. (Just scrub them really well afterwards to get the gun powder and gases removed.)   Nor do they need to begin wearing fatigues, carry ugly purses, wear hideous concealed carry vests, don macho belts, or look like they gained 50 pounds on their hips just so that they can carry a firearm with them for protection.  Learning the ropes on these kinds of issues merely comes with getting your information from another woman usually…as opposed to Bubba who wears one gun in his oversized belt buckle, one in his military boot, one in his fanny pack, and one under his hat. 

By the way, it’s a firearm—not a weapon.  A 5 inch stiletto heel, hairspray, or a credit card is a weapon. Let’s not get them confused. 

Here’s to learning…

Kellene

Women of Caliber exclusively trains women, by women, the skills of physical and firearm self-defense, including the UT Concealed Firearm Permit.  For more information go to www.womenofcaliber.com

 

Copyright 2009 Kellene Bishop. All rights reserved.
You are welcome to repost this information so long as it is credited to Kellene Bishop.