This is reality for women.

Your mind is a weapon, keep it loaded.

~unknown

Women and men are very different in so many ways.  Sadly, this includes how we behave when we are out alone at night. Most men don’t have an issue, they can walk to their car and not give it a second thought.  Women on the other hand, must do things such as carry mace, hold their keys like a weapon, and use the buddy system as much as possible.  Women are trained from a young age on how to be mindful of the dangers that surround us, and to act in away to keep ourselves safe.  We do it without even thinking.  Well last night, I had an experience that brought it to the front of my mind.

I was heading to my sister’s house for the weekend and I decided to pick up something at the liquor store off the highway.  I had never been there before, but it was on the way, so I said why not.  It was around 6:30pm, it was dark outside, and the parking lot was full.   Finding a spot was difficult and I had to circle around quite a few times.  The third time I came around, there was a parking spot right by the door. Score for me! Well, not really.  In the spot on my driver’s side was a van, a huge cargo van with a big sliding door.  Immediately, my brain said danger, danger, don’t park here! And I didn’t park there, I know better.  It only takes 5 seconds for someone to grab you from behind and pull you into the van. So, I continued to circle around until another space opened.  This is reality for women.

This morning I was talking with my sister and brother-in-law about it.  My sister immediately said, “hell no you don’t park there”.  She then went on to explain a time when she got out of work late and in the parking garage there was a van parked on her driver’s side. She climbed into the passenger side of her car, locked the door, then moved over to the driver’s side.  My brother-in-law on the other hand, expressed that he had never had to think about something like that.  Again, this is reality for women. 

We can say until we are blue in the face that it shouldn’t be like this, and something needs to change. However, there is nothing we can do; the dangers will always exist, and we will always need to be mindful of them. I am 36 years old, and as a child I was warned about the “red van” kidnapping kids.  That was 30 years ago.  Amazingly, it only gets worse as time goes on.  This is reality for women.

Moral of the story? Women, stay safe and teach your daughters to do the same.  Men, be mindful about what the women in your life have to go through to be safe.  The world can be a scary place, and we need to stick together.

~Harmony

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