I am a partner in a property management firm. Recently, I showed a property and felt a little vulnerable. I don’t often feel this way, but I just happened to be showing the property later in the day than usual. My lack of fear might be false security because I am “out” so much. I run, walk, cycle or hike daily.
Interestingly, the person I showed the property to happened to be a woman who sells defense weapons and she just happened to have her weapon with her. We started talking about things we both liked to do, and I mentioned my recent day hiking. She pulled her stun gun from her pocket and said “you need one of these”. I was intrigued.
She began to show me how it worked and let me hold it. It was super light, had an built-in light and a wrist strap so that if someone took the weapon from me it would pull a deactivator so that the stun gun would be worthless to the attacker. By the time she was finished showing me the product I felt empowered just by knowing I could fight back without actually touching someone.
This incident got me thinking about the times we are living in. Women are more active. We are out of our homes more than ever. We need ways to stay safe. I know about guns. There is so much controversy about guns right now, I wanted to address alternative options for self-defense for women.
As I thought about the topic I considered what I would want as a “virgin” weapon carrier. I have never been one to go looking for danger. With that said, I’ve never been overly safe either. I’ve always out run, out walked, out hiked, and out cycled fear. I also take my big dog most places.
The more I thought about it, the more I realized I’ve been lucky and it’s probably time for me to be more safe. I am also one to think that once you are aware of something, it would be irresponsible not to use your knowledge. I feel responsible for taking care of my four daughters and all of my friends and family, so this article became a project in safety for all, focusing particularly on what a woman like me would actually carry and be able to use in a dangerous situation.
There are spiking, stabbing and slashing tools. These products can be worn as “jewelry” such as rings and necklaces. They also come in the form of key rings and pens. I’m concerned about accidentally slashing myself and or not being able to get close enough to use the weapon. I’m little, so my arms won’t reach farther than most attackers. With that said, the fact that these items target the ability to get a sample of the DNA of an attacker gives this category a push. This is something none of the other weapons offer.
There are stun guns and tasers. The difference is stun guns require direct contact with the attacker and deliver a shocking sensation. Tasers look like guns and shoot wires that shock the would be attacker from a distance. While different states have differing regulations, tasers and stun guns are legal for personal use in 47 states, with the exceptions being New York, Hawaii, and Rhode Island. Many states have exceptions to their use, so be sure to check your state laws before purchasing. Also, when travelling by plane the TSA requires your device to be in your checked luggage. Both Taser products and stun guns are available from sources such as Amazon in a wide variety of price points… there is something for everyone.
There are “pepper sprays” with a host of classification from arisols to gels. Spraying distances vary. Some are better for inside and some leave dye when they are sprayed on an attacker. All come in various sizes so you can choose what fits your circumstances best. Little Viper sent me their defense bracelet to test. This product is a small wristband (which comes in many colors) with a small canister of pepper spray in it. I like this. The band is adjustable to fit on any size wrist and is very easy to carry and access. I would recommend it to anyone who is active and less likely to use any of the other products.
Two other categories of self-defense weapons also deserve a shout-out. Pens are capable of being hidden easily for city-life and professional settings. Alarms are great for those women who truly do not feel comfortable with physically attacking another person, but engage in outside activities regularly. Don’t underestimate the deterrent it can be.
I recommend that any woman who spends time in vulnerable situations (all of us?) use this post as motivation to find your weapon. The days of giant cans of mace and knuckle rings as the only other weapons of self-defense for women besides a gun are over. There is no excuse. There is constant dialogue of wanting to feel empowered. Empower and protect yourself by choosing and carrying a defense weapon. While carrying a weapon does not eliminate the possibility of being assaulted or attacked, it may decrease your fear and motivate you to get out and go places you might not otherwise. It will give you more protection than not carrying anything at all. Find a weapon that suits your lifestyle and share your experiences with others who need to protect themselves.