It is rare that I find myself uncomfortable in the company of a man. More likely, women make me uncomfortable because I find they are trying too hard to control who they are sexually rather than just experiencing it….feeling it….rolling with it.
I know, I am the poster child for open sexuality, but something happened to me over the weekend that I need to express to all women and men who have an important woman in their lives. This event brought me back to a time….a long long time ago in a far away place (going all Star Wars here!)… when I was not smart where men were concerned. I thought innocently because I had never been hurt by a man that I would not be. I mean physically. I am not talking about abuse because I have seen that all of my life. I am talking about the stalker mentality that is present in some men. You know the feeling when you get that little shiver that runs from the base of your neck down your spine? That’s not the sexy, nipples getting hard, body tuning up for sex play type of sensation.
Friday night, I dropped by the local drug store to have pictures developed. It was going to take 30 minutes, so I decided to stroll around….look at Christmas stuff…..kill time! A guy walked up to me with a Santa hat and asked me to try it on. Said he would like to see me in it. He stood entirely too close into my personal space. As he was in his middle 40s and stood well over 6 feet (I am 5’9”), he literally towered over me and was looking down on me. I could feel him breathing and I, Marine chick at heart, felt my counter-terrorism training kick into play. I declined without stepping back or breaking eye contact. Then, I turned to walk away. My plan was staring to rolling in my head already. Don’t leave the store. Look for people to contact around you. Walk to places this person would not go (crowds, for example). Look for cameras around the store. I went over to the cosmetics aisle and could see him in the reflection standing behind me staring. If he was looking for fear…he found the wrong girl. Causally, I walked over to the tampon aisle (no man goes there without a reason right??)! As I turned, he was there too. I reached down and called The Marine. I asked him to meet me at the store.
What if he had not been able to pick up the phone? I have a list of people (My Favorite Scorpio, my dad, a guy my hubby works with that is our friend) that are next. If all that fails, ready? Contact the Store Manager!! Police offices are full of reports about women who did not want to cause a scene and ended up on the news as missing at the end of the night. You can quietly speak to the Manager without causing a scene. Protect yourself first!
It’s that knowledge that someone is assessing you physically….not sexually….and you can see it reflected in their eyes, their words, and their body moments. Its the realization that someone is hunting you….but you DO NOT have to be a victim.
The Marines call it “assessing your enemy” and I am here to tell you that you should be ready with a plan to protect yourself. If you are out with your girls, include things in your plan like give a cell phone number (if you want to talk to him again) instead of your home number, share an email address instead of your contact information, and memorize phone numbers of friends / family to call in case of emergency. The worse thing that can happen is for women to rely on saved phone numbers for important people. Although speed dial is great, what if you don’t have your cell?
All too often, I hear women say that a man “seemed like such a nice guy” or they “got a feeling from him,” but did not pay attention. You will often read recommendations from me that you flirt or interact with a man with a consciousness of your own self. Remember: your safety first. And, please…if someone gives you that spooky feeling that you can’t describe, don’t stop to assess it. React in a way that takes care of you. Listen to your instincts at all times. If he gives you that spooky kind of spark instead of the sexy sensation….or if your little voice is just saying to you “there might be something wrong here”…..listen. Nature gave you everything else….including an early warning system!
Support Spotlight: Any Soldier
We all know that I ♥♥♥ Marines, but if your flavor runs more to other branches of the military, AnySoldier.com offers a complete list of military people who would love a care package for Christmas with suggestions of what is needed most (you WILL BE surprised!). Sometimes, the basics are the best gift you can get from home. A copy of a newspaper, a Sports Illustrated, a pack of disposable razors (not kidding—you would not believe the things The Marine needed when he was in Iraq). This is one everyone can do and use to teach their children about gratitude. And, dont forget…if you want to grab the yellow ribbon next to this post for your blog, feel free! ~~Dee