FIGHT like a man, THINK like a man, ACT like a woman..

Discussion in 'Women of the Martial Arts (Women Martial Artists)' started by Jenna, Aug 3, 2008.

  1. jks9199

    jks9199 Administrator Staff Member

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    Stalking is a very complicated issue, especially since there is a lot of variation in different states definition of "stalking." In Virginia, the stalker has to somehow put the victim in fear of sexual assault or other bodily harm, for example. Beyond that, the motivations for stalking are very complex. Some stalking behaviors (male or female) are just the result of being dense and socially inept. Others are literal rape situations.

    There's no easy advice; each case requires individual assessment and an individual response. In one case, all that may be needed is showing that you've moved on. In another, only incarceration will stop the behavior until the stalker shifts to a new victim.

    Things get even more complicated if a man is accusing a woman of stalking, because there is often a perception that men can't be the victim of an offense like this.
     
  2. Kacey

    Kacey Sr. Grandmaster

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    I've been stalked; thankfully, the person in question has, to date, obeyed the stipulation agreement (like a restraining order, but voluntarily agreed to by both parties). It's been 6 or 7 years, so I don't think about it much... but when I see certain vehicles or body types, it does make me look closer and think about jumping behind something. Being stalked is a horrible, peace-robbing experience; I had a lot of support, including our school resource officer (a LEO who works out of our school), which helped a lot - but it pretty much ruled my life for months.
     
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  3. Jenna

    Jenna Senior Master

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    Kacey thank you for relating your experience. You alluded to situational awareness. I wonder would you agree that after a period of protracted vigilance, your awareness can become confused with a kind of insidious paranoia? I am asking because I wonder if you would have ever considered being pre-emptive and approaching such a fanatic to circumvent further ingress into your space? Or would you have gained greatest assurance from taking a defensive position and bolstering your defence? I have wondered would a confident guy in that situation have pre-empted? I know I am generalising and but this is why I am asking about fighting like a man and thinking like a man.. I know guys who like to go at things head on.. in many real-life situations that is absolutely the right way.. In the case of your defence though I have found there are some situations where the opposite, defensive attitude and posture make.. some people more appealing to an opponent. However, of course if we are pre-emptive – even in a sutuation where it is obvious that talking is not diffusive – then we become the aggressor ourselves. I wonder does a guy faced with his own defence have the fight already projecting in his head from the get go? I do not know.. I am just trying to determine if it is possible to gain an advantage by changing thinking to that of a guy that is all.. apologies if this does not make sense.. Thank you again for your thoughts, I am very grateful my friend :)
    Yr most obdt hmble srvt,
    Jenna
     
  4. JBrainard

    JBrainard Senior Master

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    Something just occured to me. I don't know how to put this... Maybe what you are looking for is that you need to carry yourself like a man. Walk with you head up, walk with confidence. The bad guys see this and think twice, or better yet (kind of), pick another target.
    There is a student at my school who started out as kind of the "wouldn't hurt a fly" kind of guy. He just earned his 5th level belt (half way to black and the hardest belt to earn before black) and I noticed a subtle yet powerful change in the way he holds himself. It's like he has the word "confidence" stamped on his forehead.
    What I'm getting at is that perhapse your problem is simply a matter of lack of confidence. Being hypervigilant (sic?) can be a show of fear. If that's what you are projecting, that's what the would be attacker will see.
    Does this strike a cord with you? I may be way off the mark.
     
  5. kwaichang

    kwaichang Purple Belt

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    Just because your paranoid, doesn't mean they aren't out to get you. :)
     
  6. Kacey

    Kacey Sr. Grandmaster

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    It cleared up fairly quickly; restraining orders, after all, are only worth something if the person served with such orders is sufficiently law-abiding to follow it. Had this guy been willing to do so, it would have happened fairly quickly, I think. In addition, a couple of years later I moved, so he no longer knows where I live; he still knows where I teach TKD and school - but I'm not really concerned about him showing up anywhere there are that many witnesses.

    No, I never did. He knew where I lived, worked, and taught TKD - and what I wanted was for him to stay the hell away from all those places and from me and my TKD students; I found out after I had the temporary order served that he had been trying to get one of my TKD students, a teenager, to help him "win me back" (a good trick, since I'd gone out with him once and refused to every do so again) - which upset me more than anything he'd done to me. Why give him an excuse for violating the stipulation agreement?

    Well, that's pretty much what I did. The SRO at my school knew what was going on (it was on his advice I filed the restraining order), as did my senior students (one of those involved is a lawyer) - that just left the possibility he'd come to my home, and I lived in a condo at the time; there was usually someone around.

    I couldn't say... you'd have to ask a confident guy who's actually been in that situation. Until it happened, I never believed it could happen to me - and I hadn't ever considered how I'd react until it did happen.

    I tried going at it head on - I told him flat out I wasn't interested in dating him, that if he couldn't accept that I was only interested in being his friend and quit asking me out, I couldn't be his friend - I was very clear about that. He was self-absorbed enough that he just couldn't accept that I wasn't interested - instead of quitting asking me out, every time he asked the date got more complex, the location more expensive. He started giving me gifts, which I returned; he joined my TKD class when I refused to date him - when I wouldn't accept gifts from him, he started presenting things for the class in front of my students, most of whom were kids at the time (which meant it was really hard for me to turn them down - I really didn't want to try to explain what was going on to 10 year-olds). He found out while we knew each other that he was bipolar (at least, that's what he said at the hearing) - but while that explained his behavior, it didn't excuse it, although he seemed to think it did.

    Had he continued after the court hearing that led to the stipulation agreement, I wouldn't have tried to deal with him - I'd have (and still would) called the police. I still have a copy of the stipulation agreement in my wallet.
     
  7. Jenna

    Jenna Senior Master

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    Kacey I cannot thank you enough for sharing this.. it has a very great value, thank you my friend. You have endured a lot and which must have been extremely difficult and upsetting.. But you persisted and you stood your ground and I hope you have thanked yourself for having steadfastness.. And that you possess one of the strongest and wisest voices my friend is an inspiration to me that it is possible to persist right through.. like a star through the heavier clouds..

    I do not think it would be proper for me to go commenting about your the awful circumstances you had to endure and but I am maybe in a similar situation here again for the second time.. Can I maybe ask if it is not too much trouble.. regarding your home.. this is a particular concern.. did you have no worries at all over your defence there? Can I ask how confident were you in your own physical defence? By your posts I think you have a very great deal of fighting experience and but even irrespective, did you ever feel lacking in confidence to be able to handle yourself in very unexpected situations? Did you ever adopt a different mentality or mindset in order to deal with your impending situation? And were you confident in the support of your local police? I appreciate that police have a difficult job with little resources and I would not criticise anyone and but I guess it is not incumbent upon police to be anyone's bodyguard.. we must be our own bodyguards I think.. Thank you again my friend.. I am so very sorry for asking so many questions.. thank you
    Yr most obdt hmble srvt,
    Jenna
     
  8. Kacey

    Kacey Sr. Grandmaster

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    Well, at the time I lived in a condominium, which consisted of 4 units in a single building. My particular unit was on the second floor, and could only be accessed from ground level, by a door in from the outside or the garage (both opened onto the same landing) - then you went up the stairs inside the unit. The garage door for the car was electric, and I could get into the car before opening the large door for the car. The doors were solid wood - so going through them would have been difficult, at best. I also had a dog - she wasn't particularly vicious, but she was very loud.

    Reasonably. The person in question was about 100 pounds overweight, and horribly out of shape; I would imagine I could have outrun him, if need be, in about 100 feet.

    Of course I did - there is always another "what if" that cannot be defended against. I didn't let it rule my life - that would have been letting him win - but I did take what I considered to be reasonable precautions to avoid unexpected situations. Had he chosen to not obey the stipulation agreement, things could easily have been different than they were.

    "Impending" implies, to me at least, that something is both expected and about to happen. I didn't have any way to know what he would or would not do - but I did know that doing nothing myself would ensure continued problems.

    Yes. My local police were, among others, those who suggested I file for a restraining order in the first place.
     
  9. Abbie-San

    Abbie-San White Belt

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    I don't think women should have to think or act like men when it comes to training and fighting. In our dojo, there are three women ,including myself and we are greatly out numbered by men but if anything we are more lethal than the men just being how we are, graceful and relaxed :p

    If anything the guys don't like working with us because they know we can throw them across the room very easily in training, but we're not all butch about it, we're just being ourselves. I mean i don't have any arm strength at all, if anything i'm weak and i don't really like having to get muscles just to be as strong as the guys, just being myself is good enough.
     
  10. Si-Je

    Si-Je Master Black Belt

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    Maybe the best mindset is to stop thinking of self-confidence as a male or female trait. And to re-define "toughness" in the context of training martial arts and in defense of one's person.

    To me, in training pain and injuries will happen, if you feel hurt then you are hurt. How you respond and handle that is what makes you "tough", there's no reason to become "butch" or "macho" about the whole experience. It's an experience in life and that's all it is.

    For any martial artist techniques that work well or better for the individual should be adopted as their personal arsenal, whether male or female.
    Some techniques work better for taller folks, shorter, stronger, or faster folks. Adapt to what works for you.

    As for the mentality of "thinking and fighting like a man" in fighting really makes me cringe a bit. We are women, and as women we have many strengths and advantages that many men may not or ever have in fighting and defense. These are usually pretty natural to us and to go against your instincts can have bad consequences in a conflict. I'd go more with, "FIGHT like a woman, THINK like a woman, ACT like a martial artist."
     
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  11. imitation_vanilla

    imitation_vanilla Yellow Belt

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    A friend of mine taught me about "the armor of contempt" (in the context of LARP, actually, but great for bad situations!). Approach your opponent walking tall, with direct eye contact, and an "I'm going to F you up" facial expression. Nothing to do with gender/sex, everything to do with using body language to make someone think twice about assaulting you.
     
  12. Tez3

    Tez3 Sr. Grandmaster

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    It depends on the situation, it can be seen as a challenge instead.
     
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  13. drop bear

    drop bear Sr. Grandmaster

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    Never worked for me. Did work for the 6 foot 8 ginger I worked with.
     
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  14. Steve

    Steve Mostly Harmless

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    I think the key word here is LARP, emphasis on the two words "role playing."
     
  15. blackbeltpixie16

    blackbeltpixie16 White Belt

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    A very wise female Master in my style and I were just discussing this recently at our National Championships. In our style at least...most the the senior members and people in charge are all male, as are just about all of the Dojang owners. I can only speak for my style but in ours the martial arts world is still very much a male dominated world. There's a lot of very talented female practitioners but all of us have to work twice as hard as many of the men to earn the same respect and position that our male counterparts receive easier. My senior female Master that I was talking to told me that because it's a male dominated world still we have to work harder to show we're just as good, push ourselves harder, train more, fight harder, but the trick is to never lose that we are women. It's a given that if you train a lot you'll develope quite a lot of muscle but never feel like you have to balk up and look like a man. Womens bodies just aren't made for it the same, especially our upper bodies. Fight like a man, be brave and not afraid to take a hit or give one, be a force to be reckoned with on the fighting floor. Think like a man, calmly, logically, able to assess the situation and handle it without a lot of emotion getting in the way. Be the woman you are though. Don't become hard or lose that female mothering touch, if you like having a female appearance then keep it, but show them you can be a woman but be a man's equal. At least that's what we've found here that works
     
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  16. jks9199

    jks9199 Administrator Staff Member

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    This only works if you have the underlying confidence that you can carry through on the threat...

    There are some very good actors that can pull it off otherwise -- but mostly, nope. You have to have the real confidence to back it up. If you don't -- at best, you send a challenge out. At worst... Ever see some little yippy dog when it runs into a real big dog?
     
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  17. Touch Of Death

    Touch Of Death Sr. Grandmaster

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    I say fight like a woman. Be cold, indifferent, and maybe bring stuff up the guy did years ago. :)
     
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