It can happen even in broad daylight…

Just recently in the news, a woman was forced into the back of her car by gunpoint after shopping at Walmart.  

Thank goodness she didn’t have any kids with her and she was later released.

Could this have been prevented?  I believe so and I’ll explain.

As awesome as it would be for every mom to know some self defense skill to not just protect themselves but their kids too, it’s just not realistic.

I’ve taken a street tactical self defense class in the past and some of the moves I learned were amazing, but unless you lived and breathed it, it’s very difficult to be proficient at it.

And with two kids with multiple after school activities to juggle, and my firefighter hubby’s inconsistent work schedule…it was just too much of a stretch to maintain it.

One thing for sure though…

There were many eye opening and ah ha moments that I learned from it.

So the instructor that I had was an ex-military, ex-policeman/undercover agent.  

Pretty impressive right?  

He had so many crazy stories of things that people do.

The Man Hiding Underneath Your Car

One story in particular that I still remember until this day is a case where someone was hiding and waiting underneath a person’s car with a knife.

He’ll wait for the perfect moment to then cut the back of your lower calf area (aka your Achilles Tendon) to cripple you so that you cannot run away.   

That person has now fallen to the ground and the guy gets out from underneath and throws you into the back of the trunk.  Next thing you know, you wake up in a different country and you have been sold to be a sex slave.

Unbelievable, dumbfounded, shocked, outraged, astonished, speechless…everything I felt when I heard that.   

It’s a scary world we live in.  

So next time you come back to your car, take a peek underneath JUST to be on the safe side.

Here’s another one..

Groceries or Kids First

When you go grocery shopping, chances are when you’re done, you are pushing your cart full of groceries with your kids as well.

So upon reaching your car, what do you do first?  Put your purse and kids inside the car so that you can put away the groceries away quicker and your kids are out of the parking streets? Or put your groceries away first?

For those of you who say you put your purse into the car first, you might want to reconsider, ESPECIALLY if you are also having your kids get into the car too.

Apparently, there was a case where a mom put her purse and kids into the car and then proceeded to put her groceries away in her trunk.  Someone stormed into her car and drove away, with her purse and kids inside of the car!

Sounds so far fetched right? I still cannot believe someone would do something like that 

But then again, I cannot explain many of the crazies that goes on in this world.

So if it is not realistic for moms to take the time out to learn physical self defense skills, then all that we can do to protect ourselves and our kids is make sure we do everything in our power to PREVENT it.

My biggest take away that was drilled into us over and over again is to…

“Be Aware!”

No matter where you are at and especially if you are in a parking lot at the store or mall at night time, always keep your eyes peeled for any suspicious activity or people who may be walking towards you.

In the example of the woman I mentioned earlier, it was stated in the article that she spotted a man crouching alongside the car next to hers.

Hindsight is 20/20 but that activity does seem slightly suspicious doesn’t it?  If she had any gut instinct that it was kind of weird, then following it by going back towards the store could have saved her from that attack.

With the holidays right around the corner and more people shopping, it is vital that we stay vigilant and aware of our surroundings.

10 Tips That Can Make All The Difference

  1. Get into the habit of walking around your car before getting in so that you aren’t surprised by any lurkers.
  2. Get into the habit of locking your doors as soon as you get inside of your car.
  3. Don’t wear a backpack purse to go shopping, especially now during the shopping season.  And if you do, move it to the front. It’s much easier for someone to grab your bag from behind when you least expect it.
  4. On a similar note, don’t carry around a checkbook because if that gets stolen, your home address will be known and that may bring forth unwanted visitors.
  5. If you go to a club or bar, don’t leave your drink.  If you do, go buy another one. Apparently, this is a common tactic for pimp sex traffickers to capture their next victim.
  6. Don’t unlock all the car doors when pumping gas.  Thieves have been known to open the passenger side door and take your purse in the front seat without you even knowing.
  7. If you’re up to it, watch the TV series Forensic Files.  Criminals have confessed/bragged about being able to be a copycat of the cases that gets portrayed on there.  It’s not to get you paranoid but to help you be informed of what’s possible.
  8. Stay aware.  Scan your surroundings as you walk to your car.  The moms more likely to get attacked are the ones distracted by their kids, are on their phone or are juggling too many bags in her hands.
  9. Be aware of vans that are parked next to you.  It’s easy for perpetrators to slide open their door and grab you or your kids without anyone even noticing.
  10. Last but not least, trust your motherly instincts.  If something feels off or not right about the situation, remove yourself and your kids from it.
These are just a few things that have been shared with me as well as from what I have learned over the years and I hope they are also useful for you to know.

The best form of protection is always going to be prevention.  

Your chances of becoming a victim is lessened if the perpetrators can see and sense that you will catch on to them before they can get to you and the only way for that to occur is for you to…

Be and stay AWARE at all times.

If you found any of this information helpful, please share it.  The more we can help to spread this message, the more empowered us moms can be to keep ourselves and our kids safe.