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Feb 23

How To Protect Yourself If You’re A Woman

Posted on Saturday, February 23, 2013 in Uncategorized

210060_beauty_of_sadnessWithin twenty-four hours of publishing the two Dating Disaster “Date Rape” posts I took a phone call from a very scared family member whose loved one had just been served papers accusing him of rape.

This is not an isolated concern.

The possibility of date rape or an accusation of date rape is a real threat, for the safety of women, and for men. Let’s review:

Her Story
His Story

How To Protect Yourself If You’re A Woman 1

It’s true that anybody can say no at any time: at hand holding, kissing, pet- ting, right up to penetration. If you say no, that means that your partner must stop, but you have to be smart, too.

You have to avoid sending mixed signals, like protesting one moment and then coyly relenting, purposefully trying to turn him on and off like a faucet, or agreeing to an intimate dinner at his place when you have no intention of becoming intimate, or making suggestive comments in public and turning cool once you’re alone. That’s game playing, and it’s dangerous.

You abusing your power is no more attractive than him abusing his.

After all, if you’re not clear on what you mean, how can you expect him to be?

Be smart and follow these guidelines:

– Avoid situations that put you at risk. Don’t go up to his room if you really don’t want to be there.

– When you say no, say it with a period instead of a question mark. No means no, not “maybe” and not “convince me.” Don’t be stupid.

– Never cry rape as a way of getting even or getting attention. This is serious, serious stuff and can ruin both of your lives if it’s not true. A false allegation of rape is illegal.

Other things to keep in mind:

– Don’t invite trouble by inviting yourself into a compromising situation and then playing dumb. “What kind of girl do you think I am?”

– Understand, men have been taught that if they don’t make a pass, you’ll think they’re gay, so no fair baiting them.

– Rubbing against a man’s penis is going to get him excited, and he’ll feel you should finish what you started, so don’t get started.

– Using alcohol as a way of excusing yourself from responsible behavior is misleading to him and dangerous for you. Nobody ever does anything drunk they don’t wish they could do sober.

Thank you Joy, for your insights.

I’d like to add a final point. It’s an obvious, time-tested, true, but not very popular perspective: If you choose not to surround yourself with people who presume sex before you’re married is a given, you will be less likely to find yourself in a vulnerable and unsafe situation.

You can find How To Protect Yourself If You’re A Man here.

1 – This post quotes from Dr. Joy Browne’s book, Dating For Dummies®, 2nd Edition, Chapter 27: Dangerous Dates: The Dark Side.

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