Our society is comprised of many good, honest people who would give up their own life in order to save the life of a stranger. However, there are others who would take a life for monetary gain or even for the thrill of it. This dark element demands that we are prepared to protect ourselves and our family.
I would prefer it if everyone would all just play nicely, but this real-life game requires that we prepare to survive. No one weapon or skill is the perfect choice for everyone, but there is something that will be perfect for you. The ever-increasing list of physical defense skills and weapons is enormous. That means that no matter what your age, physical or mental abilities, or the legal restrictions in your area, you can find a way to protect yourself.
The first step is to perform an honest evaluation. We examined our family and carefully considered the age, physical and emotional abilities of each family member to determine which methods of self-defense might work best. Financial resources and access to programs was also an important consideration. Each person must learn valuable self-defense skills that will enable them to protect themselves without depending on someone else.
Safety takes the highest priority as we develop skills and master our weapons of choice. Please make sure that you do everything safely and legally.
Firearms – We have chosen several firearms to be included in our personal safety action plan. For safety reasons, firearms are always kept in a locked safe and are only used under adult supervision. Every member of the family is trained on each weapon we own as soon as they are old enough. Family outings at the shooting range are for recreation as well as training purposes.
Hunter Safety – Each of our children are required to take and pass a hunter safety program. Hunting is an exciting pastime in our community. Our children are exposed to it in many of the homes of their friends and family members. In an unofficial survey at school, 97 percent of homes in our area own firearms. Therefore, wisdom dictates that our children clearly understand safety considerations when firearms are present.
Pepper Spray – Strategically placed around our home you will find cans of police grade pepper spray. The guns are always locked in the safe so they are not quickly accessible. The pepper spray would be miserable in the event of accidental exposure, but not fatal. I would have absolutely no hesitation using pepper spray on any intruder, or threat to my family, but I would hesitate before shooting someone. I recognize this possible complication and compensate with pepper spray. In the event of an intruder, the children do not have access to the guns locked in the safe. However, they could quickly grab a can of the pepper spray in almost any room in the house to be prepared to defend themselves. It is a compromise that we are comfortable with. A little side note: It is easier to take out multiple attackers with pepper spray than with a firearm for anyone with less than a professional skill level.
Physical Self-Defense Programs – Programs exist for every age and gender. I am a certified radKIDs instructor. This program teaches children how to be safe, avoid dangerous situations, and physically resist an abductor. The program is designed for the physical capabilities of elementary age school children and truly empowers them with the mental and physical skills to get themselves to safety.
radWomen is a rape defense program which teaches women of all ages. As you will see in these photos from an actual training simulation there are women from age 12 to 75 that gain valuable skills and confidence as they physically resist an aggressor. There are many other wonderfully effective programs available. These are ones that are available in our area with a proven success rate.
Karate – Another form of training we have selected is martial arts. We found a local dojo and are very pleased with the physical skills, discipline, confidence and comradery that the program provides. Regular programs, such as karate, help to develop and maintain physical skills much better than short, periodic programs. Weapon training includes the body as well as nunchuks, bo staff, baton, and more.
These are some ideas from our family self-defense action plan. Your family is different and so your plan will be just as unique. Some families love hunting and using firearms while for others it is not something they enjoy. An honest evaluation and desire to protect yourself and your family will ensure the right plan of action for you.
Please remember that the goal is never to motivate with fear. The goal is to build confidence, knowledge and skills in the event we are forced to confront dangerous situations that we were unable to avoid. Wisely preparing to protect ourselves will bring peace and confidence.