So I play Pokemon Go. I love walking around and participating in random discussions while finding little pixel critters to collect. It makes me happy.
Unfortunately it has also made me lax in my ‘female safety routine.’
You know the FSR right?
Basically because you can’t leave your vagina at home you have to make sure no one is going to try to occupy it without your permission.
You do this by being aware of where you are and who you are with. Are you alone? Do you have safety measures at hand? A back up plan? A back up, back up plan? Did you tell people where you would be and when you would be back? Do you have a code word among your friends for when you feel uncomfortable?
Personally I don’t depend on code words and comfort. If someone makes me feel weird I walk away toward people I am fairly sure will be a barrier or hinderance to whatever some perv is doing.
I’m also not shy about telling someone they are being inappropriate or creepy. I’m definitely not shy about teaching other people, younger women mostly, how to tell strange men to get lost without feeling like they are breaking the rules of politeness.
I’m embarrassed to say though that politeness has gotten me out of many awkward situations when I’m alone.
If I think I’m in danger, I smile and keep walking, if I can’t keep walking I tell whomever is the threat that I’m meeting someone. If someone touches me I escalate from there.
I’m not a strong woman and I have invisible handicaps that make it impossible for me to run and/or fight. I’m not comfortable carrying a gun, and I’ve been raped by people I trusted.
Therefore caution is my first defense and confidence my weapon.
In this case I forgot to be cautious and I got out of my car in a dimly lit parking lot looking for a charmander that regularly appears there.
I ran into two big young men who were rather lecherous when I said hello. Fortunately there was another car arriving with more charmander hunters.
I was shaken by the experience because I let my guard down when I know better.
I’m not giving up my hobby, but I am going to be more cautious.
I wish that were the end of the story. It never is though, and it never will be.
Because rapists rape. They don’t care that I should be able to do what I want when I want anytime I want.
I have to be careful every day, all day, like I said, I can’t leave my lady bits at home. And I can’t feel entirely safe there either.
PS. Fuck you lecherous assholes who think you’re being funny. Just because I was polite doesn’t mean I enjoyed the company.