When we hear the word “survival”, it seems most of us think of things like starting fires, building shelters, hunting, fishing, searching for water and other basic survival skills. Although those things are essential to our survival, there are other areas that we need to take into consideration that are just as important.
For years I walked around with my head down and just went with the flow. I didn’t take notice to the people around me or my situation. It would have been very easy for anyone to walk up behind me and take my purse, or worst case scenario, attack one of my children or myself. Times changed though and so did I. I started taking notice to cars in the parking lot, people in the store or someone pulling up our dirt lane when I knew no one else was around. Being aware of our situation, puts us at an advantage, especially when something seems off.
The other evening my husband and I were in the drive-thru at one of our fast food places. The man in front of us was upset at the cashier and demanding his money back. She was trying to explain the procedure to him because it was after midnight, things work a little differently. He became belligerent and got out of his car, screaming at the girl inside. She told him she was calling the police and immediately closed the drive-thru window and he proceeded to bang on it. I was a bit nervous, but I knew to remove myself from the situation. I knew to take down his licence plate number in case he decided to drive off and I knew we needed to put as much distance between our car and this guy. There was no way I wanted my husband or myself in the middle of that situation. Luckily, it didn’t turn into anything major, the cops arrived, we got our food and we moved on. But, this man could have been armed and it could have turned out a lot worse than it did.
Women need to be aware of what’s going on around them. Sitting in your car to go through your receipts, your purse, jot down your purchases in your checkbook are dangerous habits to form. Attackers will use this as an opportunity to strike. Too many people think that women can’t protect themselves and unfortunately they think we are all victims. We need to be sure we can identify an attacker and we need to be sure we can observe the situation fully, remove ourselves if we are able to and be able to defend ourselves if it comes to that.
I cover the topic of situational awareness more extensively in this article: Situational Awareness For Women
Knowing how to defend yourself with your body is an important skill to have. Whether you are a concealed carrier or not, you may find yourself in a situation where you don’t have a weapon to help you and you may have to use other skills to protect yourself. We recently signed our 14-year-old daughter and 8-year-old daughter up for self-defense classes. I want to do everything I can in my power to be sure that they can defend themselves if someone should decide to attack them. Check online and see what types of self-defense courses are offered in your area. Most self-defense classes will cover: avoiding high risk situations, assessing your aggressor, disarming your aggressor, breaking free, choking defense, defense from the ground, defense in the dark, different striking techniques, and pressure points. By taking self-defense classes, it’s just one more skill in your arsenal to be sure you can protect yourself.
Thank God we have our 2nd Amendment right to protect ourselves! Sometimes, regardless of how trained you are in self-defense techniques, you may find you have to protect yourself using your firearm. But you can’t do this effectively if you don’t know how to use your gun, if you aren’t comfortable with your gun and if you haven’t practiced. There are many places across the country that offer firearm safety courses and some even offer classes just for women. All places will offer beginner classes and many offer advanced training as well. You can visit the NRA online or the gun shop you purchased your firearm from for information about who holds classes in your area. Be sure to also check out your local ranges and make a commitment to take the time to practice with your gun. Even if you’ve owned it for a long time, it’s good to stay on top of your training!
I’m not talking about a home security system here, although I do believe everyone should have one. We do need to be alerted somehow that someone is trying to get into our home. This gives us time to be able to grab what we need to protect ourselves. Taking extra measures doesn’t hurt though!
- Figure out what is the easiest place to break into your home and then take measures to secure that area.
- Keep all windows low to the ground locked.
- Put dead bolts on all access doors.
- Do not keep a hidden key outside.
- Keep your doors locked, even when you are home. I used to get nervous about the kids just walking inside after school with no key. I made sure my older kids had keys and I started keeping my door locked. If anyone would have seen my children just walking in, they’d know our door was unlocked and that was an open invitation to them.
- Install cameras – These here are pretty good ones that are relatively inexpensive.
- Lighting – Look around outside for spots that are hidden and dark. Installing lights to brighten up those areas will deter someone who is trying to break into your home. Install motion detector lights on your porch and near your doors.
- Don’t leave your garage door open. Anyone driving by will be able to see what you own and many burglars do this to scope out areas. Also, Google Earth takes pictures and if your garage door is open, it could end up on the internet for the world to see.
Personal Bug-Out Plan
I am a stay at home and although The Patriot Dad also works at home, we are not always together. I am often here alone with one or more of my children. Faced with the fact that there may come a time that I may have to leave here without my husband, I needed to put a plan in place. Having a family communication and bug-out plan in place will help with the specifics of this part. However, I do realize not everyone will be bugging out with family, and they need to come up with a plan as well. Mapping out your plan of where will you go, how will you get there, what and who will you take with you and do you have your bug-out bag packed and ready? You can write all of this down, share it with your family and friends that are part of your plan and keep it in your home management/family preparedness plan binder.
Every women should know how to protect themselves and their loved ones. When we take the right steps towards being able to do this, that is true empowerment!
What steps have you taken to ensure you are prepared to protect yourself and your family? Let me know in the comments below!