April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month
March goes out like a Lion and April in like a Lamb…. as say they say.
When I think of April, I have good thoughts <3
April brings about beautiful landscapes. Flowering shrubs and trees, daffodils, lilies, tulips, a beautiful showcase of blooming Azaleas.
It seems the allure of springtime also creates an opportunity for bad things to happen.
April is sexual assault awareness month.
Perhaps it should be every month, but as many seniors are leaving the nest, it is a good time to focus on some simple tips to stay safe. Unfortunately, things can happen anywhere, to anyone, at anytime – day or night.
One in three females victims (of either) completed or attempted rape experienced it for the first time between the ages of 11 and 17. SOURCE
When looking or moving your child into school,
- take note of where the campus security stations
- Simple things like not walking alone, especially late at night.
- Know the schedule of buses or trams and when they stop running.
- If you’re studying late at night, make sure to communicate with a roommate or friend.
- Let others know where you are going to be and with whom.
If you’re the parent of a graduating student (or friend), a great graduation gift would be some measure of self defense (for example pepper spray). Layering self defense tools is also a good idea. Having a flashlight, whistle or personal alarm can also be helpful.
Almost one in four undergraduate women experienced sexual assault or misconduct at 33 of the nation’s major universities. SOURCE
I’m personally speaking from experience and it’s one of the events that lead me to start Incognito Wear IX. I experienced frustration and a sense of helplessness.
My daughter didn’t want to talk about the event. So, how do you help your child process though a horrific event. I was shocked to find out that the campus police don’t seem to be too interested in solving, taking on the case, or investigating the event.
Nor do the schools want the publicity of such an event or events.
My daughter wanted to forget the event and want it to “just go away”. I can understand how and why victims are so reluctant to speak out against their attacker.
One reason is the shame. Secondly, the embarrassment of the event and self blame. I believe the biggest reason is the fear of not being believed and having to relieve the trauma over and over.
I hope you or your child Never experiences an assault. It’s a difficult topic to speak about.
I believe getting professional help is critical; even as your child insist “they are fine” – They are NOT!
Emotional trauma should be processed in order to move through the event and on to good mental health.
The best solution for prevention, of course, is to become situational aware of your surroundings. Keep your head on a swivel. Make Eye contact and make mental notes of what you observed.
Again, having a flashlight, whistle, personal alarm, pepper spray, tactical pen, or (if campus carry or of proper age to carry) a firearm.
Be observant. Does it look normal? Would someone wear a winter coat in summer?
I invite you to share with your child the increase usage of date rape drugs, especially common at universities. For this reason, Never leave a beverage unattended.
Awareness of methods of attack are helpful, but what if…. this happens to you or someone you know?
I invite you to check out a few fictional novels that deal with this topic by an author who has experience and training in dealing / processing deep trauma for emotional health.
“Snatched but followed” by Frannie Watson and “Pursued but shielded
Additional helpful resources –