Wear shoes you can run in

Girls should be able to wear what they want when they go out and know that they will be safe.

But until they are I'll be telling DD to wear a sensible coat and sensible shoes.

You might think that I'm a terrible woman, and not a good feminist at all by suggesting such a thing. You might rage at me that dressing 'slutty' isn't an invitation to rape, that getting drunk, or falling over in high heels isn't an invite to abuse, and of course you are right.

You might suggest that by teaching DD to be 'the safe one' I'm asking the rapists and idiots on a Friday night in town to 'target the other girls' and you might have a point.

But what am I supposed to do? Going out is still a risk for women despite loads of high profile campaigns. Young men still seem to live in a world where buying you a drink entitles them to 'something' in return, or a kiss is obviously an invite to more.

Am I a terrible mum to want to protect my daughter? If I had a son I'd be telling him how to respect women, how to protect women, how 'nice guys' don't finish last at all, they end up with girlfriends and live happy lives. I'd be teaching him to stand up to his mates if they are arseholes. I'd ensure he had money for taxis and didn't drink too much too.

What can we do? Us parents? With teens? What are you doing?



Men Can Stop Rape - Where do you Stand? Campaign.


  1. Thank you for this post, if I still had a blog I'd be writing something along the same lines. I am worried that in our (understandable) desire to avoid victim blaming, we are no longer teaching our children about personal safety. No-one deserves to be raped, mugged or attacked. But that won't stop me telling my kids to stay in a group, don't leave their drink unattended, don't walk alone late at night etc. Same as I'll tell them to wear a seatbelt or look both ways before crossing the road.

  2. I like that people are starting to understand that rape is never the victim's fault, regardless of what they were wearing or how much they had to drink. Victim blaming has happened for way too long and this change is good. But you're so right. Before I'd even left hospital with my newborn daughter I was thinking about this. It terrifies me. I had so many bad experiences with over enthusiastic guys who thought they were entitled to get what they wanted, and I don't want that to be my girl's experience too. I'll teach her that victims are never to blame. Of course I will. But I'll also be telling her to stay safe, because, like you said, what else can we do?