What It's Like As A Woman To Walk Alone At Night

What It's Like As A Woman To Walk Alone At Night

There's a fear that comes from a simple walk in the dark.

You find yourself working late across campus on a project, and before you know it, you are faced with a dark walk alone at night.

Your keys rattle in your hands as you take calm steadying breaths, trying to remind yourself that you are fine. Somewhere off in the distance you hear a car siren go off, and you jump. Again, you take calm and steady breaths. You suddenly hear footsteps behind you coming closer. Your heart stops, but you’re not sure why. As the person passes you, they keep on walking and you calm yourself once more.

You decide to text your friend and see if she’s awake and can talk to you while you continue your walk. Unfortunately, she is not responding, so you decide to call her. When she picks up, you explain you were walking home alone and wanted someone to talk to. There is a mutual understanding between both women that being on the phone with another person feels safer. You continue your talk and eventually make it back to your building.

After hanging up, you hear someone yell, “Hey!” behind you. Feeling fearful once more, you turn to see someone running toward you, realizing they want you to hold the door for them. You do so, then continue your steady incline up the steps to your room, feeling their presence far too close for comfort behind you. When you realize you are both getting off at the same floor, paranoia sets in. Somehow, even when you are supposedly in the protection of your building, you fear for your safety. A wave of relief sets in when you both part ways at the door, and you take a moment to compose yourself. Eventually reaching your door, you quickly go inside, lock it, and slump to the floor.

For many women, this is a very real reality. Fear is instilled in us at an early age, and usually for good reason. Statistically, one in five women will be sexually assaulted in their lifetime. Often you hear of stories of women becoming isolated at a party and taken advantage of, but also many times it is as simple as they were in the wrong place at the wrong time.

PBS’s (Public Broadcasting Station) writer Mary Dickson once asked women what their worst nightmares were. One woman clearly stated:

"I'm most afraid of being attacked by a man, especially if I'm out jogging or riding my bike or walking. I don't go out alone at night. I used to run with headphones on, and I don't do that anymore so that I can be aware of what's going on around me."

There are unfortunately bad people in this world, and because of this, women have to be vigilant and very mindful of their safety. In the blink of an eye your life can be turned upside down, so please be careful. Walk in groups, stick to well-lit streets, keep pepper spray on you, and keep your phone on you at all times. Be careful, ladies, and have a safe walk home.

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The Future Scares Me, But I Know God Has My Back

I do not know what the future holds, but I know Who holds my future.

Whether it is about my future job, future home, future husband, future family, or just my future in general, there is always something future-based on my mind and I seem to never truly be present in the present moment.

There are a lot of aspects of the future that I am worried, nervous, and/or scared about. For example, my biggest career dream is to move to California and film/produce movies in LA. My fear would be, would I even survive there? The culture and community are different, the people are different, and the overall environment is different than from what I am used to.

Can I even make it that far, or even that big? Would I even be able to afford living in California when I'm older? As a soft person who isn't as aggressive as I should be, I am also scared that I would break to the point that I'd leave California. But that's just the reality of the real world. Regardless, wherever I end up living and working, it makes me nervous.

I still have yet to meet my future husband, but I am more worried about the timing of when I will meet him. In the plan I have for my life, I definitely would want to be married before I hit 30 years old. Time is ticking, and I just don't know when he and I will meet.

Yes, 21 is considered a young age to date, but it is still prevalent. It is just difficult when I see my friends in happy relationships and hear them talk about it. It just worries me since I've never really had a guy pursue me that I just don't know when my future husband is coming my way.

Something I always tell myself when I worry about the future is, "I only have these next 24 hours to focus on. Everything else will happen and be taken care of when it is supposed to."

I also always remind myself that "God will provide."

For my future home, wherever that will be, God will send the right people in my life to support me, make me feel loved and feel like I belong, and ultimately He has my back. For my future husband, God will bring the two of us together when the time is right and it won't happen too soon nor too late. I say that I am ready to date now, but maybe God doesn't think so, and He is still working on me and my heart as well as my future husband's heart. Regardless, I've been praying for my future husband and it's almost as if I am already in love with him, even though I haven't met him yet.

Slowly but surely, God is preparing me for my future; He is working in my life. I may not know what will happen in my future, but I am super excited. God is always working in mysterious and crazy ways. He always comes through with His providence and His graces. He wants us to run into His arms if we ever feel afraid, worried, or nervous about anything. I do not know what the future holds, but I know Who holds my future.

Cover Image Credit: Mariel Ramos

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Thank You, Claire's, For Memories Of 'High School Musical' Necklaces And Glittery Makeup

You brought my generation so many memories that we all take for granted now that you are almost gone...

Imagine this: it is 2009, you just got $20 for your birthday, and your mom is taking you to the mall. You are making a list in your head of all the stores you want to go to. But the one you are looking most forward to is Claire’s.

You finally drag your mom out of JC Penny, and you see it.

The huge purple logo from the long-awaited store. You walk in, and glitter and rainbows bombard your eyes. You look up and down every rack and shelf, looking for that perfect Justin Bieber watch or that High School Musical necklace.

(I mean, I wanted that T necklace Troy gave Gabriella too!)

You pick out your favorite pink lip gloss and even an eyeshadow palette because it is half off! Life is good, you are in your happy place.

Did that nostalgia hit you like a ton of bricks?

Did it make you want to drive to your local Claire’s and pretend to be 11 again?

I’m sad to say that you better hurry. Claire’s Stores Inc. is reportedly preparing for bankruptcy.

According to a recent report from Bloomberg, the store over $2 billion in debt.

With Claire’s and Toys ‘R’ Us both in the plans of filing for bankruptcy, I really feel like my childhood is over.

I cannot help but be saddened that the next generation will not be growing up to save money for that newest Barbie doll or that glittery nail polish. It truly is an end of an era.

So, I know you aren’t quite gone just yet, but thank you Claire’s. Thank you for my memories of growing up in a simple world. My generation will never forget you!

Cover Image Credit: Jessalyn Grace / YouTube

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