Don’t live your life in fear

Ladies, get the pepper spray out. If you’re an avid checker of Sonoma State email, then you probably know about the recent incidents that have occurred in the community of Rohnert Park regarding women being attacked and assaulted. It has sparked a running concern in my mind wondering if any woman is truly safe. 

It is difficult to measure the constant fear since women live in a world that teaches them to be leery of unknown men. We forgo a nighttime event because we don’t want to travel home alone afterward. We forgo an evening jog because running at night is a luxury only men possess. We forgo an outfit because it might imply an invitation we don’t wish to convey. 

From the Nation Violence Hotline studies, it has shown that women are more likely to be a victim but males can be as well. Society has painted a picture that women are helpless and vulnerable and that they’re more likely to be the victims. In actuality more than 1 in 3 women and more than 1 in 4 men in the United States have experienced rape, physical violence and stalking in their lifetime. 

Why is it that women are usually the ones who are more paranoid when walking alone?

Even before the incidents in Rohnert Park occurred, I was still in fear when walking to my car at night. It is sad that I must fear that in a blink of an eye someone could jump out at me. I’m not sure if it’s from watching a lot of Criminal Minds or being protective toward myself.

The only time I actually feel safe is when I’m walking with someone so I’m not alone. It is upsetting to think how women have to live with this constant fear. I’ve talked with many of my friends who are women and they feel the same way. They have a routine of walking to their car at night to make sure nobody could be inside and locking the doors right when they get in. Never once have I heard any males ever having to feel this way when it comes to walking alone, especially at night. 

Even though the suspect of the Copeland Creek assault was caught, there are still warnings to be cautious of your surroundings. Women are usually the one who actually take note of that reminder. The reasons why women are more paranoid is because it’s advertised that we are more likely to be victims in an attack. Perhaps if the media portrayed more incidences involving men, women wouldn’t have to feel so afraid everywhere they go. Don’t let these assaults keep you from living your life, but be smart and always be aware of your surroundings.