Survivor of Domestic abuse with a look of defiance.

MYTH VS. FACT - FIGHTING

WE NEED TO TALK ABOUT HOW REAL FIGHTS WORK, AND WHAT IT TAKES TO STOP AN ATTACKER.

"I thought I would hit him once, and he would stop."

1. You Will Get Hurt

99% Guaranteed You Will Get Hurt! If they bring a gun you will probably get shot, if they bring a knife you will likely get stabbed and/or cut.

MYTH: “If I learn how to fight, I won’t get hurt.”

No one I have ever fought in real life ever stopped after one hit, it has always been a situation of “I need to take this person down before I bleed out or pass out”, and they are trying to do the same to me. The bruises and cuts will take at minimum weeks to heal, the psychological trauma of some events can last for years. The worst feeling though is “Helplessness” which can last a lifetime for some victims of violent crimes, sexual assault, and domestic abuse.

FACT: “Fighting your hardest is the best way to improve your outcome and save your life!”

2. What Stops An Attacker?

Physical force that literally immobilizes, seriously injures, knocks out or kills the attacker. A single elbow to the face, one knee to the groin, and often not even one gunshot will stop an attacker. It has to be serious and violent damage to the individual when in a fight. The mentality of rapists, abusers, and predators of all types is “I want what I want, I want it now, and you are going to give it to me or I will take it from you.” If you yell, he will yell louder, if you hit, he will hit harder.

MYTH: “I thought I would hit him once, and he would stop.”

It is a common thought or mental process of a non-violent individual who is peaceful and wants to live a life of peace. The truth is for those of us who know violence, if he doesn’t stop when you ask him nicely, he won’t stop just because you hit him once or twice. 

FACT: “You will need to do serious damage/pain to the attacker, which could include lethal force to stop the attack!”

3. What About Fighting A Friend or Family Member?

The majority of the time, the survivor or victim knows the attacker they are fighting, this makes it extremely difficult. How easy would it be for you to fight your boss, teacher, boyfriend, husband, etc? The people usually already have our trust, and a history with us that makes it hard for us to see them as a threat or as an attacker.

MYTH: “Someone is going to drive up to me in a white van, and kidnap me!”

Kidnapping does happen, more often though it is someone you know, that could hurt you. This is because they have access to you, maybe in isolated rooms or in a vehicle, or consume alcohol with you. These are all critical things to consider when talking about stopping an attack.

FACT: “When they violate your boundaries, they are no longer your boyfriend, husband, teacher, boss, etc. they are a threat, and you must stop or escape from them!”

Closing Thoughts:

  1. Situational awareness and risk mitigation is your best strategy for not getting hurt.
  2. Being physically aggressive is a language, and it takes time and training to learn.
  3. Don’t ignore red flags just because you have a relationship with someone.

Personal safety requires time, effort, awareness, and the commitment to weighing the risk in life. While you should never live in fear, it is extremely important that you don’t let others pressure you into risky situations.

You have tremendous value to offer the world, and you have the right to protect yourself!

A woman showing her strength as she fights with a rope.
Defense Instructor - Cody Rauh

Author: Cody Rauh

Cody has taught over 1600 students life-saving skills and has been teaching self-defense since 2015. He uses his background and training in hand-to-hand combatives, abduction prevention & escape, and improvised weapons to teach students going to college or traveling outside the U.S. on how to stay safe. 

View Defense Educations Training Programs or  Cody’s Instructor Credentials!

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