Dating Safety and Avoiding Dating Violence
Staying safe in today’s dating world is not as simple as it once was. Predators have become much smarter and better equipped than in more innocent days. Today’s modern woman, and man for that matter, has to be very careful. What seems like an innocent date can turn into dating violence in a split second. Knowing what to do and how to prepare is the key to avoiding such a fate.
Avoiding Dating Violence
Have a dating lifeline
It is always important to make certain that somebody knows where you are, who you are with, and where you are going. Having that person available throughout your date in case of emergency is also a great idea.
Have friends along on your date
When possible, you should always bring friends along on any date that is new. Dating in a group is always a good idea at the beginning of a relationship. There is safety in numbers and it allows you to get to know the person in relative safety.
Don’t be afraid to say no
When you are setting up your date, don’t be afraid to say no to things that you are uncomfortable with. Sometimes this is a test to see how pliable you will be. Stand your ground and insist on sticking to your guns when you feel uncomfortable. This might be about where you go, when you go or even when you come home.
Bring your own transportation and cell phone
When you are first dating someone, it is absolutely vital that you have a cell phone on your person at all times. Your dating life line that was mentioned above should be set on speed dial. It is also a good idea to bring your own transportation. This allows you the freedom to walk away if you feel the need during the date. This also allows you to keep your home location a secret at the beginning of a relationship. It only takes one stalker in your life to make this a very good idea.
Stay in public places
On your initial dates, you should only go to public places. Make sure you pick a place that is well lighted and has plenty of people. It is not unusual for a first date to end up in a club. This particular scene is not in your best interest for a date with a stranger. Avoid clubs at least in the beginning.
Avoid alcohol and keep all drinks with you
Alcohol is never a good idea and it goes without saying that other mind altering substances are bad as well. Even if you are only drinking a Coca-Cola, you need to ensure that you keep it with you at all times. As a matter of fact, it is not a bad idea to keep it in your hand at all times. Though this may seem a bit paranoid, it only takes one second to spike your drink when you’re looking away or in the restroom. It is always better to be paranoid and safe.
Trust your instincts
Dating violence usually happens when we let our guard down and ignore our gut instincts. That little voice inside your head will let you know when things feel unsafe. If you feel that at all, then you should listen to it and remove yourself from the situation.
While on Your Date
When you are on a date, it is absolutely vital that you recognize signs of potential abuse in a dating partner. Not surprisingly the signs of abuse are similar to those in a long-term relationship of abuse.
Know the warning signs that indicate potential or current abuse:
- taking control of your finances
- having a short temper
- keeping you on a short leash
- insulting you verbally, alone and in public
- controlling all decisions
- making you dress in a certain manner
- showing extreme unhealthy jealousy
- physically harming you in any way
- keeping you from loved ones and friends
If you see or recognize any of these signs during a date or in a relationship, remove yourself immediately from the situation.