Latest posts by Angela D. Coleman (see all)
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- How Trauma Can Spark Activism - March 2, 2018
Victims of sexual assault on college campuses are speaking out. Stranger danger is real. However, many women are assaulted by someone they know and trust. Sexual assaults on campuses are way too common. You are at risk on any campus: high school, boarding school, prep school, military, etc. Don’t be a victim!
It is the responsibility of school administrators to protect female students from sexual predators who disguise themselves as teachers, professors, mentors, students, and even friends. There are also things you can do to protect yourself.
Be a sister and support other women on campus. Together, let’s bring the number of women assaulted on college campuses down. Stay safe by following these easy tips.
1. Know the facts
According to the New York Times, 1 in 4 women experience sexual assault on campus.
2. Trust your intuition, no matter what
If you get a bad “vibe,” leave it alone! Your feelings do not require explanation. Act on them to be safe now and avoid being sorry later. There are very few bad things that can happen when you listen to your gut and many bad things that can happen when you ignore it.
3. Understand that sexual assault is about power and domination
This person will seek women whom he believes he can force to do what he wants. He will do this using all of the tools at his disposal: charm, persuasion, manipulation, drugs, and physical violence are just some tactics.
4. Be aware of your surroundings
Situational awareness means you know who and what is near and around you AT ALL TIMES. Pinpoint your exits and avoid going to sparsely populated and unknown places by yourself.
5. Don’t trust men blindly
This includes faculty as well as other students. Trust requires time and demonstration-he must earn your trust and respect. Don’t assume that he is safe to be around because he seems nice.
6. Avoid drinking or eating anything that you did not see prepared and placed in front of you
Women are often drugged to make them easier targets for sexual assault. They wake up with no memory of what happened to them. Also, if you indulge, know your limits.
7. Map out your destination and rides ahead of time
Include your designated driver. This way, you will not be tempted to accept rides from people that you do not know.
8. Use the buddy system
Go out in pairs or groups. Stay with your friend or group. Do not wander off by yourself, especially at crowded parties and clubs.
9. Know that extra attention from male faculty is inappropriate
If you are a student and a teacher or professor is showing you extra attention with gifts, favors, and sexual attention, know that this individual is crossing a serious boundary. It is inappropriate, immoral, and may be illegal.
10. If something happens to you, speak out
Don’t let this traumatic experience silence you. Know that if you have been sexually assaulted, you did not do anything wrong. As difficult as it may be, tell your friends, family, school administrators, teachers, anyone who will listen. When you share your story, it can help you in your healing process and help others, too.
BONUS TIP: Take a self-defense class
Taking a class will boost your confidence and awareness. You will also learn how to get out of sticky situations and fight back if you are attacked. Click on the link below to see a self-defense video.BONUS TIP: Take a self-defense class