The authors wish to acknowledge Dianna McLeod (from The Rape Crisis Centre), Betty Taylor (from The Women’s Crisis Centre), for sharing their expertise in this area.
would also like to thank Professor D.W. Vickers for his generous help and
expertise with the photography; and, Alana Hampton for her stunning artwork.
The Philosophy and Rationale of Authors,
Ros McCarthy and Bill
is the philosophy of the authors that it is important to break the silence our
culture of violence creates in its victims.
Young people need to experience life and its demands so they can learn
from their experiences to cope better. This
enhances their self-esteem. They
need to do this in a nurturing environment so they may learn love and respect
for themselves whether they succeed or fail.
They need to be taught they have a right to be safe, that humiliation
from abuse is not acceptable. They
must learn to break the silence and get help.
aims to enhance people's awareness of ‘at risk’ situations, to build their
coping-skills of problem solving and communication, as well as giving them
physical skills to offset violent attacks and the knowledge of how and where to
go for help.
book was written because the authors have worked with people - adolescents in
the school environment and outside it and adults - for over twenty years.
We have come to realise that people have naive perceptions about violence
and ‘at risk’ situations. It is
easy to pretend, "It won't happen to me!"
Most people prefer to think this way.
transformation of students, adolescents and adults (including the elderly) to
feeling they could not possibly defend themselves, to confident people empowered
to act, has excited us and amazed them!
concern for increasing violence in society is very evident from the fact that
for the first time in Australia, a Prime Minister has urged people, particularly
women to be more aware and to help to eradicate violence. Governments are
authorising messages to “expect respect” and not accept violence but to do
something about it!
price of safety is heightened awareness and eternal vigilance.
It's OK to have problems. All
humans do! Why not avoid the ones
you can? This book is a guide for
protective prevention from anti-social behaviour.
We all hear street kids are street wise because they have learnt through
the school of hard knocks and failure. Awareness
and education can produce the same result without the pain of being a victim.
If you want to be aware, feel more secure, read on!
This book is essentially about:
*Coping with violent attacks
Rape - It Won’t Happen To Me!
Check out the facts!
Read the table and debunk the
myths so you can be forward thinking. Practise problem solving and assertiveness
to minimize your chance of being in an, ‘at risk’ situation.’
interview with Di McLeod from the Gold Coast Sexual Support Service revealed
Australians have a higher rate of sexual assault than thirteen nations in the
world per head of population. Statistics
show that 1 in 5 women and 1 in 3 men will be assaulted in their lifetime whilst
only 1 in 10 rapes are reported.
(according to figures from the Australian Institute of Criminology) had 800 more
sexual assaults in 1988 than NSW, and 1200 more than Victoria.
Di reported, an international survey in 1988 showed 7.3% of Australia
women reported sexual assault compared with 4.5% in the U.S.A. and 4% in Canada.
Figures in 2003 will only have escalated not declined.
of the 112 victims counselled by the Centre's staff between July 31 1990 and May
21 1991, 49 reported being raped, 40 said they were victims of incest, 15 were
multiple assault victims; most had been attacked by a family member in
their own home.
How are victims chosen?
avoid being a victim you need to know how a victim is chosen. Lifers (convicts) in the U.S.A. were shown independently the
same photos and asked to select a victim. Significantly,
they all chose the same victims… people
who looked timid, reserved and low in self-esteem.
also indicate pensioners and unemployed people are in a high-risk group.
This is because many of them do not appear confident, assertive or in
charge of their lives - because old age makes them physically and mentally less
able to function as effectively as they would like, while unemployed people are
understandably low in self-esteem.
is very important to present yourself positively at all times.
If you feel down, try not to show it.
Put on a cheerful face and walk jauntily.
do you avoid potentially ‘at risk’ situations - in your own home or
need to listen to your ALARM BELLS. Many
people tend not to hear their first warning signal.
They dismiss it thinking ‘I'm being silly’ or ‘I'm imagining
things.’ Often it is only on the
third or fourth warning signal that a person thinks of possible evasive action.
Often this is too late.
What are your warning signals?
of a time when you were really scared. What
was your first body sign: sweaty palms, a pounding heart, difficulty breathing?
Hone in on your body signals and when you experience one or more of these
signs again, ask yourself, ‘What is wrong?’
bells have sounded, what do you do next?
you recognize your warning signals, acknowledge you are not feeling safe.
Ask yourself, ‘How can I remove myself from this situation?’
Don't panic! Take some deep
breaths, then problem solve your situation and act on your outcomes as quickly
nothing is so bad you can't tell someone.
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(c)2004 Zeus Publications All rights reserved.