Being raised in the suburbs where we always left our front doors unlocked and naivety ran rampant through my bones, it never occurred to me that I could potentially be a victim of violence once I moved to the city. Yes, I have mace on my keychain and I know to go for the eyes, throat, testicles, and knees if attacked, but it never even crossed my mind that I would ever actually be attacked.
So a couple of months ago, when I actually found myself on a dark alleyway, alone in my car with no where to go and a large man at my window threatening to “beat me,” I really had no idea what to do.
It all started when I was on my way home from a night out with friends. I was looping the block to find parking and got caught behind a car with two strange men in it that had no intention of moving.
I honked my horn after a couple minutes of waiting and that’s when all hell broke loose. The guy in the driver’s side seat slid out of the car and came to my window, screaming bloody murder. I, being an idiot, had my window down and was too scared at this point to even think about rolling it back up. After several attempts to drag me out of my car physically, this man started punching my car, over, and over, and over again, all the while screaming about how he had children at home and who did I think I was and all I could do was sit there, dumbstruck, crying.
I didn’t even get a plate number.
I have never in my life felt so helpless. I was at this man’s mercy. Yes, I could have backed up my car or called the cops, but my body and mind were on autopilot. Once fear gets your body in its grip, you’re helpless.
Nobody should ever, ever, EVER have to feel that way. If you’re a female (and hey guys, even you) do yourself a favor and take a self-defense course. Buy yourself a taser. Keep your doors locked and hold your car keys between your index and middle finger just like your mother showed you too. And never, ever assume that you’re safe. Always be on the defense. Always be aware.