Women experience challenges in everyday life in many different ways and for different reasons. They are portrayed as sexual inadequate objects; therefore, opportunities open for women to be personally victimized, which can lead to affect the mental, social, and physical issues. Because of this, women have to be cautious to every detail of their life from how they dress to how they behave depending on the setting, know how to defend themselves, and learn to cope. Women are put under a lot of pressure as to how to protect themselves so as not to give the wrong impression.
Women must choose their wardrobe wisely because of inappropriate comments depending on their choice of clothes. Females feel like they can’t wear what they want because there are so many criticisms they can endure. Statistics show that 6 out of 10 women said it was commonly believed that women who go to parties wearing provocative clothing are asking for trouble (Bever, 2018). Women must choose wisely whether to wear a tank top and shorts or to wear a t-shirt and pants according to the weather, which can be frustrating for females because they shouldn’t have to be uncomfortable or weigh the risks solely based on their choice of clothing. Women should always be aware of their surroundings and apparently, be careful on they behave. Females at a young age are taught to not act a certain way because it can attract negative attention. If a woman goes out with a group of friends and acts wild, she is sending out red flags to the people around them that have no idea who they are, they are thought of as promiscuous, even though that might not be the case. Females should be able to go out and enjoy themselves without feeling like can be potential targets, instead they have to change their clothes, route, job, and the way they socialize to avoid assault (Bischof, 2018). Men are not the only assailants at victimizing women, believe it or not, women have been known to victimize other women. Females tend to be jealous of other women, either it is because they have the attention of a man that the other woman wants, giving that woman ammunition to label the other woman as promiscuous.
Women must learn to defend themselves to keep themselves from being victims. There is self-defense classed geared toward teaching women to defend themselves, these classes help females how to identify predatory behavior, how to deflect that behavior, and how to physically maneuver their predators’ weak spots (Stratus, 2015). The classes are not only for women but because women are more commonly victimized, they are the ones most likely to take the self-defense class. Many females in their daily experience have to take steps to avoid being a victim, women are taught at a young age that we are responsible for avoiding the violence that men perpetrate against us (Bischof, 2018). This is normal behavior for females because they take extra steps in their routine to avoid being a victim.
The consequences of being a victim results to impact that person psychologically, physically, and socially. Going through that kind of experience can provoke symptoms and can negatively affect that person long term. There is so much that goes into it besides the experience, it makes the victim wonder was it their fault or what could they have done differently for it to not have happened to them. Females shouldn’t have to change what they do in their daily routines to feel safe or avoid being assaulted. Physically females are affected by this type of victimization by not wearing makeup as they did before being a victim and wearing their hair a certain way to be noticed, like wearing it up instead of down to appear less attractive. Mentally, women start to contemplate what they did and place the blame on themselves and that they brought on the actions of their perpetrator. They feel no one would understand if they tried to communicate how they felt about it or someone would place the blame on them saying “they asked for it”, leading them to not speak to anyone about it and let it build up inside. Some women eventually begin to have suicidal thoughts while experiencing PTSD, that they feel weak or that they are alone and scared. They sometimes tend to be not as social as they used to be and become less social at the risk of being attacked again (Boyd, 2011). Victims avoid situations and places that these experiences could easily occur again.
People, in general, have a hard time coping with traumatic experiences, however, women who have been victims of sexual crimes have resources available to help them cope. There is a hotline that is called National Sexual Assault Hotline that is a number anyone could call to talk to someone, there are also groups that gather with several men and women who have been victimized the same where they can talk about their experiences individually and know that they aren’t alone, not feel judged, or that none understands. There many tips and steps to help with their trauma, which takes time to do. The first step to do is talk about it with someone you trust and accept what happened and accept that it was not their fault (Smith & Segal, 2019). After they have accepted what had happened to them, the next step is to understand it isn’t going to go away overnight and realize that they couldn’t have done anything to have stopped it because it was going to happen regardless. Another part of coping is realizing that their mind is going to continue to replay the experience, but they must learn to get past it and not let it control them and figure out how to allow themselves to deal with those feelings (Smith & Segal, 2019). Although they will feel like the traumatic experience is who they are, it does not define them. Learning to take care of yourself without worrying about what could happen next and not letting your trauma experience control your life is another step to getting better.
Once a woman who has been a victim has learned to accept it and move on, it’s time to start putting your life back together. It’s okay to dress up, feel pretty, and to go out and have fun with friends and family. They will then have to realize that not every person in this world is not out to get them so it’s okay for them to let their guard down, but to keep in the back of your mind to be aware surrounding and actions by others.