This is the second post on Sexual assault awareness. The first one is on healing from traumatic past. This post concentrates on how to defend such an assault or abuse to reach the state of #NoMoreMeToo. The post mainly concentrates on teenagers.
Recently, have been speaking with few volunteers on self defense. This made me to do some research on the same. Came across the below quote on Self defense during the research. It gave me a whole new perspective of the issue in hand.
“Self Defense is not just a set of techniques; it is a state of mind and it begins with the belief that you are worth defending” – Rorion Gracie.
This quote revealed me that some people don’t even know that one can defend themselves from such an abuse or assault. That’s really concerning to know, realise and is worrisome upon understanding.
It’s time to take up self defense seriously and make it part of learning. Our girls should be taught skills on self defense. They should be taught that they are worth defending. They should also be taught the different forms of abuse. Sometimes abuse could be physical. Sometimes emotional. So, self defense should be holistic.
When I was a school going girl, there was this belief that girls who learn self defense would start losing their feminity! This is untrue. But it’s the duty of every parent to ensure that their Girls understand the difference of being a girl and using self defense without falling into the pit of fake feminism or becoming a Femi Nazi. It is all in teaching the balance.
Similarly parents should ensure that their Boys learn that girls are equals and not a threat for their success. Should teach them that masculinity doesn’t mean they are superior folks and can cause harm to girls. Should make them understand the need for personal space for themselves and respect the space of girls.
On a global scale, there should be a change in thought process from grass root levels on gender roles. Cooking, cleaning should be taught that these are life skills and gender doesn’t have a role to play. This will shift the chauvinism mindset to equality mindset.
There are some curious teenagers who would like to explore their own bodies and the bodies of opposite gender. This will be for children below ten as well. Which will be dealt in the next post. Here for the curious case, there should be an open space at home to ask questions about sex and body parts so that they don’t search them outside. Should tell and make them understand the roles of body parts and how sacred sex is! Having a friendly communication always with teens helps because that is the age they would get hooked in the confusion of love, lust, crush etc. Their puberty plays a crucial role.
With friendly communication, Teens would eventually realise that they will get a person who will put respect first, then understand each other, fall in love and they can become intimate. This will change their perspective of sex forever. Such children will ensure a happy family is created through and by them.
Apart from physical and emotional abuse, these days there is cyber abuse. Call it virtual but emotional. Physical can be defended. Emotional abuse need to be identified in the first place and then should strengthen one’s mind to not to fall prey for the same. Cyber abuse mostly happens when the trust on the virtual person is blind and when one hasn’t taken enough steps to know the online privacy settings.
Not just teenagers, even adults get caught on lust online without their knowledge when they do not have enough self love! Pollachi case and the recent tiktok cases are classic examples for the same.
So new perspective and understanding required in sensitive matters with the advent of technology. Concentrating on Minute aspects and taking baby steps towards the same can help us in the long run in the upbringing of next gen people.
Let people understand that only with the balance in Yin and Yang energy a family can live happily. World’s saddest sight is to see our children suffer. Without being informed on sex and self defense our children will either suffer in silence or make others suffer in silence which spoils the liveliness of our families. When we fail to teach our boys on personal space and freedom we may fail to give good fathers for this society and when we fail to teach girls on self worth and self love, we fail to give bold and caring mothers to our society. We are in a responsible position to teach them the balance.
So, their self defense should include
- Creating and protecting a personal, both physical and emotional space for themselves.
- Teaching them that they should be treated well in any situation. Either when alone or when in groups, should be respected and treated the same way.
- Making them understand that it is okay to tell No and retaliate when something defying their security is about to happen.
- Self help is the best help.
- Standing up for themselves
- Through knowledge on online portals and using it with lot of modesty and with caution.
These would prepare their mind and they will be aware of such happenings and also know how to defend themselves in such situations and guard them.
As stated earlier, as we give a safe environment physically, emotionally, psychologically for our children they in turn will create happy families when they grow up!
Happy Families make a Happy Society.
After all, together we are one big family!
Loads of Love to one and all.
Rukmini P Kirthivasan