Statistics from the National Sexual Violence Resource Center states that 1 in 5 women will be raped at some point in their lives. While this statistic is high and worrying, the truth is that in 8 out of 10 cases, the victim knows the perpetrator.
In cases like these, the rape could have happened because the woman was drunk or drugged, and her partner took advantage of the situation. Or she could have been forced by a man who decided to have his way with her even if she wasn't keen.
If someone you know rapes you, the police will handle the case. Generally the woman's life will not be taken if it's someone she knows. In this article, we'll look at the remaining 2 out 10 cases where a stranger rapes a woman, because this can be a life-threatening situation.
Getting raped by a stranger can be a terrifying because the woman will not even know who the attacker is and there's always the possibility of the rapist murdering her so that there are no witnesses. This is one of the worst crimes on the planet and it happens daily.
During times of crisis, crimes escalate, and rape cases go up. There have been reports of women who have been raped when staying at shelters because of a flood, etc. So, you must be prepared for such a possibility.
Let's look at a few ways you can prevent rape and what to do if you happen to get raped.
All prevention starts with situational awareness. Most rapes can be prevented just by exercising common sense and doing what's right. Walk with confidence and scan your surroundings.
Do NOT bury your head in your mobile phone and walk around oblivious to your surroundings. This is especially true at night when there are dark corners, and someone could take you by surprise.
Park your car close to well-lit areas. If you're shopping or working late, ask security to escort you to your car if you feel unsafe.
It's best to keep a pepper spray or a stun gun in your jacket that you can immediately use should someone pop out from behind your car. This may seem like paranoia, but many women have been grabbed just when they were getting into their cars.
Always be cautious and prepared. Once you get in your car, quickly lock the door. Someone could just open the door and drag you out if it's unlocked. Don't sit around in your car checking the social media updates on your phone. Drive home and be safe.
People are creatures of habit. Usually, rapists monitor the victim's movements for a while before planning to accost her. You can avoid this by parking your car at different lots daily so that no one can guess where you'll be next.
When entering an elevator, make sure you're alone. If someone tries to rush in, you need to get out. Being out in the open increases your chances of escape and getting help.
* Rules of engagement
Depending on the situation, if you're alone, you can try talking your way out of the situation. Appeal to your potential attacker's conscience and be calm. Overreacting will only aggravate the situation.
If there are people nearby or a short distance away, you can start screaming to draw attention. Most rapists will flee because they don't want unnecessary attention.
The moment a rapist lays a hand on you or tries to drag you, they've decided to rape you. The goal now is to bring you to a secondary location where they can commit the act and/or do worse and get away with it.
Once this happens, you'll need to go on full offense and strike them or bite them. Eye jabs, kneeing the groin, throat punches, head butts to the solar plexus, stomping their foot with your heel, etc. are all quick effective methods to injure them and buy you time to escape.
While this is not an article on self-defense, the goal is to inflict as much pain on your attacker as you can. DO NOT EVER play the victim and think that complying with your attacker's demands is the best option. You do not know what they have in store for you. Fight with all your might.
If you have a weapon, use it and flee. The goal is ALWAYS to escape. Unlike the movies, most attackers will not chase you because it's tiring and they risk getting caught.
* Coping with a Rape
If despite your best efforts, you get raped, depending on your situation you can either use your phone and call for the police for help or ask a close friend to come get you.
Your first stop should always be the police. Do not go home and shower no matter how badly you want to 'wash away' the event from your mind. Forensics are necessary to pick up hair, DNA and so on.
Law enforcement will usually arrange for you to get medical treatment too. Once the initial shock of the ordeal wears off, you might want to get professional help so that you have an outlet for the emotional repercussions that arise from such a devastating ordeal.
It will take you time to heal, but healing is possible. Many women who have been raped go on to lead very positive and rewarding lives after the healing process.
If this has happened to you contact https://www.rainn.org/
To sum it all up, always remember that if you're alert, situationally aware and well-prepared, you can greatly reduce your chances of getting raped. Sign up for self-defense classes and practice your techniques often.
All rapists are looking for weak prey. If you're as ferocious as a bobcat and have the fighting skills to back you up, in most cases the perpetrator will flee after getting a few blows from you.
Rape is all about control and not sex. If you show that you're willing to kill them rather than be subdued, they'll run off because it's just too much effort.
Self Defense 101 - Don't ever assume it won't happen to you. Be ready.