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Our bodies, ourselves

Do you carry a rape alarm?

rapealarmdollymix.jpgA review of rape alarms over on Shiny Shiny got me thinking. I've never carried one. It has occurred to me that I should get one. I live in a not too swanky area of London and I walk home from the bus stop alone late at night. Sometimes, quite worse for wear. So why aren't I carrying a rape alarm?

I don't want to tempt fate by writing this piece, but I actually don't know many women who carry a rape alarm. In fact, I know of one who has one with her at all times. So why aren't we going out with these? What is it that stops us carrying them?

I can see several (albeit not very clever) reasons. I'm not sure that rummaging about in my bag is going to be top of my list if I'm in trouble. I carry all manner of crap in my bag and sometimes it can take me ten minutes just to find my travelcard. I'm not sure someone attacking me is going to wait while I rummage about in my bag.

And as a few people have said over on Twitter, they tend to sound a lot like car alarms. And whilst I'm sure they help shock an attacker, they're not going to have anyone running to your aid. What do you do when you hear a car alarm? Ignore it. How is that going to help you?

And then there's the fact that they're pretty well known for going off at any given moment. So after you've thrown all of your shopping into your bag you have to then stand in the middle of the street trying to switch off the alarm. Drawing more attention to yourself than you ever wanted to in the first place.

None of these are particularly good reasons for not doing something that improves our safety. But do they really help? I'd really like to see some statistics about whether or not they help women in trouble. And if the majority of women I know don't have one, is there any way they can be improved so we do carry them? I don't take my safety for granted, but I'll be honest about not being that vigilant sometimes.

So tell me what you think, ladies. Do you carry a rape alarm? If you've ever had to use one then do let us know in the comments. I don't want to belittle these if they could stop someone from being attacked, but I'm keen to find out why we're not using them.

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Posted by Sian Meades on July 16, 2009

Comments

I agree about the rape alarms potentially being ignored like most other alarm sounds... But I do like the idea of the anti-rape "back-off or I'll shock you!" jacket -- they should make a unisex version as it would help people defend themselves in any situation.

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Posted by: Cho Yung Tea | April 26, 2010 7:02 AM

Very small alarm here so I like it because we can carry with us very easily anywhere so I hope you that makes a big market value in future.....

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I know about this alarm so that I use this my home...

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These rape alarms should be distributed free of cost to every girl and woman.

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Posted by: virility ex | July 12, 2010 1:40 PM

You never know what a rapist/murderer is looking for in a victim. Heck, some prey on grandma's, others go after girls in school uniforms, others are looking for children the more innocent looking the better.
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Posted by: Acai Optimum | July 17, 2010 4:19 AM

You never know what a rapist/murderer is looking for in a victim. Heck, some prey on grandma's, others go after girls in school uniforms.?

Posted by: Acai Optimum | July 17, 2010 4:22 AM

Any type of protection is good in my books. Even for men too.


Posted by: Dermitage | July 22, 2010 5:46 AM

These should be distributed free of cost to all the women out there. What do you say guys!!

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Very small rap so I carry this very easily.....

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