I’m sure we’ve all been guilty of doing things like being glued to our phones while walking to our cars and innocently tagging our locations on Insta without knowing the danger these seemingly miniscule gestures can cause us.
Did you know that last year alone, 301,855 women in the US were kidnapped? [Statista Research Department].
Human trafficking in the US is at an all-time high, and according to Fortune Magazine– its a $150 billion dollar industry.
You guys… Billion. With a B.
“This is not only a dominant issue, it’s an epidemic issue,”
Cindy McCain, who chairs the McCain Institute’s Human Trafficking Advisory Council said.
“It’s also something that is hiding in plain sight. It’s everywhere—it’s absolutely everywhere.”
Mind you, the kidnapping numbers don’t include the sexual assault numbers, the robberies numbers, the physical attacks.
I’ve personally been stalked in public, and when I was in high school- my mom was held at gunpoint and almost kidnapped.
These are the helpful tips I’ve learned over the years that may just save your life one day.
There’s an “Emergency SOS” feature on your iPhone that, in the case of any emergency (you’re abducted, you’ve had a bad accident, anything), it’ll quickly and easily call for help and alert your emergency contacts of your location.
On Apple phones:
Press & hold the side button + one of the volume buttons (at the same time)
It’ll take you to a screen like this:
Once you swipe that button over, it contacts 911 AND sends your location out to every emergency contact on the list.
a friend sent me this (for iPhone 8 and newer users) if the above steps don’t work for you
& for 7 and older:
How to set up your emergency contact list:
- Go to “Health” app on your phone
- Click on “Medical i.d.” (This feature allows you to put your medical info as well. It helps first responders access your critical medical information from the Lock screen, without needing your passcode.)
- “Edit” (top right corner)
- “Add emergency contacts”
Most don’t know this feature- but you can add “Trusted Contacts” to your Uber app under “Settings“.
What this feature does is let your Trusted Contacts know your trip status whenever you take an Uber ride (it’ll notify your contact where you are, where you’re going, and when you’ve arrived safe at your destination).
Once activated, Uber sends a pop up reminder to remind you to share your trip.
Great thing about it is: it’ll ask you for permission before every ride. So you can choose what trips to share and which ones not to.
You can access this great feature here:
“NEVER get into an attacker’s car if he pulls a gun and orders you to get into his vehicle. Most attackers don’t want to shoot you: they want you to get into the car so that they can drive you to a deserted place and do God-knows-what-else.
Do not comply, and instead run away screaming. It is MUCH more likely than not that he will just move on to an easier target.”
If he does decide to shoot, the predator will only hit you (a running target) 4 in 100 times- and even then, it most likely will not be a vital organ.
RUN- preferably in a zig zag pattern (they are more likely to miss this way).
When my mom was almost kidnapped, she screamed at the top of her lungs and ran for her life. THIS is how she got away.
“While driving, NEVER pull over if someone driving alongside you points at your car pretending something is wrong.
If this happens, drive to the nearest well-lit and populated gas station and look the car over yourself (or ask an attendant).
Believe it or not, many women have fallen for this for fear of their car spontaneously exploding in the middle of the road. Not likely.”
According to the U.S. Department of Justice, parking lots are the third most common place where crimes occur with nearly 1,400 violent crimes committed each day.
Be aware and not glued to your phone while you make your trip to your car.
My mom’s attempted kidnapping was in a parking lot (in between cars).
When you get inside your car- lock your door IMMEDIATELY.
I see this with so many people- they sit and scroll through IG, or reply to texts as soon as they get into their cars.
The Department of Justice says this is one of the biggest mistakes you can ever make in a parking lot.
Predators are known for opening passenger doors, sitting in the car, and then holding a weapon to their victim (and instructing them to drive off and do as they say).
Stop tagging places you visit on a regular basis. I see girls who tag the exact gym they go to on every post, and it legit scares me.
Let me tell you why.
True story: I was out with family and I did the usual “Post your food” routine we all do and tagged the restaurant.
Kid you not, maybe 20 minutes later I got a comment that said “I see you”.
I looked around the restaurant trying to figure out who commented, and across the freakin room was a guy staring directly at me and then gave me a smirk.
After that situation, I only tagged places (if need be) AFTER I leave for better safety measures- PLAY IT SAFE.
Even if it’s just to the 2nd floor, take it anyways.
Stairwells are known for the “perfect crime spot” where predators target their victims.
Specifically, if you see a car parked next to yours (drivers side), this can be a predator waiting to attack.
They’re simply waiting for their victim to return back to their cars- and once in between (your car and theirs), that’s when they grab you and pull you into their vehicle.
Because of this, try to avoid parking next to panel vans, large vehicles, or vehicles with someone in the driver’s seat.
Although I try not to do anything at night by myself (go to the gym, get gas, grocery shop), if I absolutely have to go- I always ask someone to walk me to my car.
If you’re at a grocery store, ask a bagger to walk you. Or if you’re at the gym, ask one of the attendants (I legit had a stalker at my gym a few years ago, so I reported it to a manager and he not only got that member removed from that gym, but he assigned me a gym attendant that walked me out every time I went to the gym).
Do NOT be afraid to ask for this, guys! It may just save your life one day.
Pepperspray is the best form of defense because it’s a sufficient, non-lethal weapon you can carry around anywhere— and it’s inexpensive!
When an attacker is sprayed, the effect is not only immediate- but it lasts 45 minutes (of burning) which is plenty of time for you to escape.
And when walking to my car, I have my finger on the button ready to spray in case of an attack.
If you’re looking for an inexpensive, easy-to-use pepper spray- buy this one I have:
This specific company partners up with established organizations in multiple at-risk populations (third-world countries) to provide pepper sprays to women in need.
The Kuros mission is to enhance safety and mobility of women around the world. They educate, they give, and most importantly- they protect.
In fact, with the purchase of the gear on their site- proceeds are directed towards putting peppersprays in the hands of women who cannot afford it (in those at-risk countries).
Hi it me. How cute is their gear though??
You can shop for some gear [HERE].
I support this company because they support women. And you should too.
Last but not least- I’m gonna leave you with some (physical) self-defense tips.
If you’re grabbed by the wrist:
If you’re grabbed from behind:
If you’re grabbed from the front:
If you’re grabbed from the side:
If you’re pinned against the wall:
If you’re being choked:
According to TraffickingInstitute.org, there are an estimated 24.9 million sex trafficking victims at this very moment.
Protect yourselves. And protect others.
Please share this info with anyone and everyone!