Saturday, January 3, 2009

SELF-DEFENSE: How Important is it for Women.

On Christmas eve, I was visiting someone that brought a message from London for me, despite not liking visiting the Island especially on Christmas eve. Well, The Activist had to do what she had to do. I mad my trip, I was running late so I had to take a commercial motorcycle popularly called Okada in the Western part of Nigeria. We proceeded on our journey. I noticed the rider was trying to tell me something but if I tried to inquire, he would just look on. He, at a point shifted into my laps and I had to move back while wondering if he didn't have enough space to sit to begin with. Before I got to my stop, he looked back and asked me if I was crazy! What? I was still trying to digest that unbelievable utterance when he dropped another one. He said " I want to kiss you"!

Now imagine if I had not known what to do or how to handle a maniac like the rider, things could have got worse. He might be a rapist. The stereotype would let us believe that women are emotional meaning that in that situation, I should just give into crying and get confused. No, handled it right. I asked him to halt infront of a police officer and the rest was history...

Another incident that I would like to share happened in December 2007, a year before this rider's incident (not on Christmas eve though). I was on my way to see a doctor because I had taken ill. I had to get off at a busy place called Oshodi in Lagos to take another bus to my destination. As I was making my way through the crowd, a guy just grabbed my butt! Well, when I turned back with reflex action, I had given him 3 dirty slaps before I calmed down. I didn't bother waiting to see who would sympathise with me since my voice was too weak to alert the nearby police officers. If I didn't leave the scene on time, the Oshodi boys, would give justice to the " butt grabist" and embarrass me. I know how they operate so, I didn't wait but I defended my self before leaving the scene

The Oshodi incident happens to a lot of ladies in our big markets in Lagos. There are all sort of harrassment from the male marketers. They pull you and rough handle you while pretending they are marketing their goods and all. So many other incidents that I can't begin to name have being endured by women and girls. Rape cases that can be avoided, violence against our bodies by those we trust with no one to help. So, since we have got ourselves, what do we do?

This brings me to what I believe is a must for every woman and girls to learn Self defense skills.

"...If you see or sense problems on your way,
just change your route and - prepare to run or
defend yourself..." — Caroline Young

What does self defense mean to us as women? In my organisation, we had a summer camp in Technology for female secondary students last year. One of the acitivities at the camp was to bring expert in martial arts to teach the girls little but effective self defense they can use to get themselves out of any danger. Did they love it? Did we feel happy to have initiated this? Oh yes!

“Self-defence is what we do to make our lives safer
on a daily basis. ” It’s about taking control of
situations in which you’re to be made a victim -
this ranges from comments to physical attack.
It’s realising that if someone does not respect your
boundaries, you should stop them. There are
many different strategies for this - saying something,
yelling, leaving, fighting - the important thing is you

By learning some basic principles of self- defense, as a woman, you are already in control. There are articles you can read up if you click on the links I provided or better still look for a self-defense or martial art expert to put you through. Not only you but your daughters, your female friends, your sister, our mothers and your female colleagues

In this 2009, I will be happier to see a violence free year. I know this is possible. Let's us all make it difficult for hoodlums, assailants or whatever logo or names they bear to get to us. It's our responsiblities to be safe. Let's self-defense skills be one of our safety cateria for 2009.

21 comments:

Rolling Thoughts said...

so iam First..does that make up for my bad behaviour?
Darling..no be so, i was trying to make my way round everyone but it looks like so much work at the moment..lol....
Meanwhile happy new year and pls forgive and forget...lol

At your post..seriously people take the piss sometimes, but omo u get liver oh, and indeed you show stand up for youself..wonder wht ild do if i find my self in such situations!..sometimes our features as women just attracts the wrong species..God help us!

Hope 2009 is joy unspeakable for u and all yours!!!!

Afrobabe said...

Funny enough as i am reading this a naija channel is on and I can here them screaming oshodi oke...lol..

Hmmm, while i support self defence I hardly think Oshodi is the best place to put it in practice...I'd rather calmly walk away...No need to argue with imbeciles....

Afrobabe said...

and why is your january 3rd date showing saturday???

Afrobabe said...

Lmao...Biko forgive me, i just found out today is Saturday......

Blame it on the hang over...

SOLOMONSYDELLE said...

Happy new year!

Self defense is something all women should be taught. My mother put me in karate classes as a child. Quite empowering, I tell you.

Kiss your little cat for me.

AustynZOGS said...

Now is the time to stand up for our women folks,against sexual harassments and abuses everywhere in Nigeria,from the young girls hawking 'pure water' who are at the mercy of Road transport workers and Touts to the University undergraduates who is at the mercy of the Randy lecturers to the female job applicant who is being lured to 'give in kind' before getting a job.I thought we have laws about protecting women from abuses?Lets dust them up.
Men folks should see it as a point of responsibility to defend these women whwnever they are at such scenes of public ridiculings o abuses.It is a collective responsibility

'Yar Mama said...

Happy New Year. Your blog was one of my favourites in 2008. Thanx

Robyn said...

am thinkin of slef defense calsses for my sisters and my lady,,we have some realyy disturbed people.

Kafo said...

two thumbs way up

he wanted to kiss you
honestly i don't know how i would have handled that situation, i would have just been too astonished to act

but i guess you are right

we have to know how to act and be prepared in case of incaseity

happy new year

doug said...

Yah I have always believed it necessary for everyone to be able to defend themselves. More so for women in this world of sickos. You did well slapping that dude. And yah, the agberos would have taken sides with him

poeticallytinted said...

LOL!!!! Perverted Okada rider!!!!! LOL.

I took martial arts classes, Kung Fu to be precise just so I could beat up on anyone who tried to mess with me! Period.

Grahamn Kracker said...

Glad you could defend yourself, friend Standtall. It happens here, too. Alaska has the highest rape rate in the US.

Thanks for sharing the stories.

OluwaDee said...

Happy new year!

Hyperemesis Gravidarium
its when one has chronic pregnency symptoms (nausea...). This is due to the hormone inbalance in the body when one is pregnant.

most women who have this, actally have little or no complications with the baby. This is because they have enough hormones, to sustain them thru the pregnancy.

Hope this helps.

StandTall-The Activist said...

Rolly Thoughts: You are welcome into 2009! And I do hope you will take self-defense seriously as well. Weall have to

Afrobabe: Calmly walk away at the grab of you butt or breasts? Hmmm, that's something.

SSD: Your mum is a thinking woman! I so love how she empowered you

AustynZOGS: good points really. Little little skills can always help us out too

'Yar Mama: My own very Hausa woman! Wait till I feature you on my interview thursday. You have got a lot to share with us o. Happy new year!

Robyn: Good thinking!

Kafo: you are right. Be prepared is the watch word

Doug: you tagged me, I did it, u no read am. Lol at 'this word of sickos'. Heaven helps those who help themselves they say. So we have to help ourselves

Poeticallytinted: You did! I fear o

GK: thanks for your contribution too. I hope women are finding ways of not falling prey to the rapists

Oluwadee: Happy new yr to you too!. I do know what it means but I was hoping you could blog about it. You said women always have the nutrient to carry the pregancy to term and deliver healthy babies? Hmmm, I don't think this is true in all situations...

Writefreak said...

Happy new year!

True about self defence, i've found myself slapping a bike rider in Lagos myself ....lol..felt very satisfied after it

Ayodele Alofe said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Afrobabe said...

Girl, that oshodi scares the living daylights out of me...and the tot of all the area boys coming out to defend their guy and probably all touching me to ask if this was how he touched me...would terrify me enough to walk away oh...

Buttercup said...

true talk!!

StandTall-The Activist said...

WriteFreak: It always feel good to be able to defend oneself

Afrobabe: Thank God, things are looking up at Oshodi now. Gov. Fashola has enforced "operation have a shop and eradicate miscreants" at Oshodi

StandTall-The Activist said...

Buttercup: which one can you do? Taekwando or Kung Fu?

aloted said...

thanks for this info.

Pls is it too late for me to learn martial arts??? tnx

My Passion, my focus, the change that I want to see in the world - is my propellent factor.

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