The theme here is that – as bad as things may look – it aint over ‘til it’s over. The bedroom attacker may make a mistake – many of them do – caused by overconfidence, or you might – if you keep your mind clear (not an easy thing to do) – find an opening that can set you free.


September 27, 2009

In my last post I talked of a situation where the Bad Guy is sitting atop his victim’s chest, his knees painfully pinning her arms, then, apparently seizing the moment when she stops struggling, he pauses to unzip his trousers anticipating oral sex.When the attacker does this – and this is something I hope you remember – he is compromising his balance and is most vulnerable to any kind of rapid balance displacement move on your part.

Roll the Bad Guy off using the following steps:

1) TRAP the foot on the side you intend to throw the attacker by placing your weakside foot on the outside of his foot (Posting or Trapping).

2) Slide your opposite foot inward until it is just below the attacker’s buttocks, Your thigh should be touching his rear end and the sole of that foot should be flat on the deck.

3) Reach up with the hand on the opposite side as the Bad Guy’s trapped foot and grab him by the shirt.

4) Simultaneously and powerfully as you can, drive your butt in the air (bridge) and push hard with the leg and foot that you had slid close to his buttocks (heel flat on the ground) in order to propel the Bad Guy off of you. At the same time, pull the hand that has hold of his shirt in the direction you wish him to roll.

5) Imagine that your butt is lifting up and driving your navel or belt buckle directly into the mattress.

6) Never give up. Use all your power. You can do it.

7) Once the attacker is off of you, strike him with whatever personal weapon (bite, gouge, knee him, kick him, drive the heel of your foot into his face) you have and get out of Dodge.

One note:As always, it is up to you if and how you do this.You can wait until he is distracted by un-zippering, or you can play into his plans by acting like you are giving up and will do what he wants. Women /girls have waited until the attacker actually had his member out and was starting to move it toward the victim’s mouth when they made their move. It was the last thing the Bad Guy expected!

Another escape I often teach features the attacker crawling up and attempting to get inside the woman’s legs. I actually advocate the woman spreading her legs – which is what the Bad Guy wants. Once he is inside and puts her in a choke hold, I teach women to latch onto both hands and not let go, while, simultaneously kicking the attacker in the ribs and back of the head with her legs and feet. I then teach the intended victim to “shrimp up” to gain distance from the attacker so she can drive both of her heels into his hips. Now, simultaneously hold onto the hands and drive the feet into the subject, and, then, while still holding onto his hands drive both feet hard into his face. Escape.

Stay safe.


Workplace Violence – What To Do?


A couple posts back I promised to talk about what to do if ever you are caught in a volatile workplace scenario where it is apparent either a patient, resident, client, or co-worker is about to perpetrate some serious hurt on you or another worker.

First of all, there are basically four types of WPV:

1) Violence at the hands of patients/clients.

2) Violence Associated with robbery and other crimes.

3) Domestic Violence that spills over into the workplace.

4) Violence among co-workers and managers.

In any of these cases, when you feel there is a threat of violence – and here I am mostly talking Domestic Violence Spillover; Violence at the hands of clients and Violence among workers – do your best to report your feelings and observations to superiors at the site. My research shows that over 85% of WPV could have been prevented if reported. Of course, often events and observations go unreported because the workplace has either a poor reputation for investigating complaints fairly (and for keeping whistle-blowers anonymous), or no capability.


There are 4 stages of WPV, each ascending stage more dangerous than the preceding stage. WPV ranges from shouting obscenities to mass murder. Therefore, when I allude to Counter WPV Strategies, I am referring to strategies against Stage 4 Type WPV (Simple Assault; Aggravated Assault; Sexual Assault; Rape; Active Shooter in the Workplace; etc.).

v TRUST YOUR INSTINCTS. You wouldn’t ignore a Smoke Detector or a Fire Alarm, would you? When you get that feeling that something is wrong, there is.

v HAVE A WPV PLAN. If you are lucky, you have a forward-thinking employer, who not only has a (Natural) Disaster Plan, a Fire-Escape Plan, but has a plan for Violence in the WP, too, including:

Ø A WPV Chain Of Command.

Ø An Assigned Laison with police.

Ø All employees must know how and when to contact Security and/or the Pre-Assigned Chain Of Command in an emergency.

Ø A Communication System to alert workers.

Ø A Lockdown and/or Evacuation Plan.

  • HAVE YOUR OWN WPV PLAN. Seriously, with violence in the WP growing at exponential rates, you should have a Personal Safety Strategy, including, but not limited to answers to the following crucial questions:

Ø What can I use as an improvised weapon to protect me at my job site?

Ø Do I know where the alarms are? Do I know the Chain of Command and how to contact Security?

Ø What items at my site could a perpetrator use as a weapon against me?

Ø Is my work site (desk, etc.) situated so that I can escape, or am I trapped here?

O CONTROL YOUR SPACE. Use your environment to control your space. Prevent the Bad Guy from entering your PSZ (Personal safety Zone).  Use barricades, such as desks, chairs, AV equipment, waste cans, et al, to gain distance from the perpetrator, or to throw at him to delay his or her approach.

v STRENGTH IN NUMBERS. If possible, call on others whom you trust to gather with you against the perpetrator.






Ever ask yourself what would I do if ever I was attacked while I was asleep? I get the question a lot at my Survival Skills for Women classes. I get a lot of questions about darn near every conceivable type of attack under every situation possible, and some that are not possible. I’ll get to some of those other questions in future posts, but, for now, I thought I’d wax on about what you might if ever you were attacked in bed.

Once again, I’m going to ask you to rely on a cluster of dependable and effective principles rather than specific techniques that you would have to dredge up from your subconscious while some creep is pinning you down and your heart rate is spiking through the roof as the result of survival stress.

These Principles are simple and there aren’t too many of them. They are the same for just about any type of attack, including the bedroom assault.

v Breathe Tactically. Most victims in this situation hold their breath and say nothing, which to the attacker is like an engraved invitation to have fun, do whatever you wish to me.

v Do Something. Never Freeze.

v Say Something. Freezing and staying mute in the face of a life and death attack empowers the villain and disempowers you! “Get back!”

v Hit An Open Target. It’s damned near Natural Law. At least one of the 3 or 4 vital targets will be open. Hit it hard and others will pop open.


Hold the phone. You say, “well, that’s all fine and dandy, but, you see, I will almost always be under my sheet and blanket. It is likely that I will not be able to use my hands.

Good point. Here’s another point: If you are unable to use your personal weapons now, understand that at some point in this ordeal, the Bad Guy must let down his defenses, which is exactly when you can and must strike!

If the attacker is there simply to pound you and nothing else, you are in serious doo-doo, if your arms are pinned (domestic violence), I admit that. But, in the scenario of a rapist who is attacking you in your bed, more likely than not, he will eventually pull down the covers in order to do what it is he came to do. When he pulls the sheets away, it is your time to deliver the Bedroom Surprise.

Ok, lets assume now the covers are off and your hands and feet are free.


v Bad Guy is standing at the side of your bed. You awake. Raise the leg on the side where the assailant is standing. This will prevent him – believe it or not – from climbing on top of you. Two things to consider here:

(1) None of his targets are available to you. They may be open, but there is no way you can hit them.

(2) However, in order to harm you, he must get closer to you. If and when he bends to choke you, his eyes are now within your reach. Quickly drive the closest hand into his eyes. If you hit them, he will recoil, I guarantee it. When he does that, either dive off the bed in the other direction, or, better yet, roll off toward him and knee him in the groin and keep hitting him until you can escape safely.

v Bad Guy is sitting on your chest and he has both your hands pinned above your head. You might say to yourself, I am truly screwed here. Cannot blame you one iota because this is a very hard attack to escape, especially when you lack upper body strength. A good thing to remember is the Bad Guy expects you to try to escape by pushing him off of you. It is important that you use the element of surprise here, though.

(1) Bend both your legs bringing them right up close so that your thighs are against his buttocks, making sure to keep both heels flat on the deck. The crucial move is to distract the attacker by biting him or kicking him and then jerking your hands quickly so that both hands are now even with your shoulders.

(2) Either Pretend to give up, or throw him off.

NOTE: Think about this. Both of the Bad Guy’s hands are tied up, as are yours. This is a stand-off. Women have escaped this situation by crying and saying “I give up,” at which time the attacker loosened his grip and reached to unzip his fly. It is at that very second that he is most off-balance and thrusting him off of you is most easily accomplished).

(3) To throw him off, simultaneously power both arms down toward your sides and thrust your hips/buttocks straight up and then roll so that your navel or belt buckle is driven directly into the ground.

v BAD GUY SITS ON YOUR CHEST, PINNING BOTH ARMS WITH INSIDE OF KNEES. The Bad Guy may try to force you into performing oral sex. This is actually a vulnerable situation the Bad Guy has placed himself in. Instantaneously raise your buttocks off the bed and anchor both heels to the inside of his shoulders. Now pull him backwards by driving your legs back.

Next: More Bedroom Escapes.




The question my last post left you with was: “So, despite your efforts to prevent being victimized, your co-worker or client is striding toward you, his face contorted in rage, his fists clenched, and he is about to invade your Personal Safety Zone (PSZ). What do you do?

At the risk of oversimplifying the situation, there are a few things I would do as quickly as possible. And, if I may add, I would do them decisively and, importantly without hesitation caused by thoughts and/or concerns regarding my company’s Zero Tolerance of Violence Protocol.

See, the thing is, the key difference between you and the person about to main or kill you (and I am still thinking of Ms. Lee, the Yale graduate student who was choked and beaten to death and stuffed inside a wall on her wedding day) is intent. The perpetrator’s sole thought and focus is on you. You are the target and nothing else on Earth exists. If your mind and focus shifts to anything but your attacker – even for a millisecond – you are toast.

Anywho, there are a few things I would do and do quickly:

v STUN THE HYPER-FOCUSED IDIOT. A great tactic is to take the attacker’s strengths and mindset and turn them against him/her. We know he is focused only on you, so break his focus. Think of it as Changing His/Her Channels. Any move that changes his focus from Channel 6, which he wants to be on, to another channel will slow him down, fragment his strategy, and split the crucial connection between his/her mind and body.

Ø Scream or Yell “Stop!” Sounds stupid, but this will work. It will only work one time, but it will startle him, maybe give you time to escape.

Ø Physically Distract Him/Her. This, too, will work. Has worked for me on several occasions. Throw an object toward him, toward his face – something like a hat, a pen, something.

Ø Verbally Distract Him or Her. “Holy crap, Andy, what the hell is that on your shirt?” said while backing up and pointing at his chest. Once again, it has the effect of changing his or her channel.

v CONTROL YOUR SPACE. Without crossing your feet (and tripping) J-Step or move diagonally or laterally away, denying the subject the ability to invade your safety zone. Let him know what you want him to do. Say something, and when you say it, mean business. “Stay Back!” The longer you can delay the attack the better your chances for survival.

v USE BARRICADES IN THE ENVIRONMENT. Hopefully, your mind will have the ability to think clearly. There should be furniture in your environment that you can use to separate you from the attacker. Increase your distance from the perpetrator. Maybe throw a chair or something else at his feet. Always keep moving.

v BREATHE DON’T FREEZE. We all need oxygenated blood flowing freely so our brains can analyze, evaluate. And formulate a survival strategy. Always breathe consciously to kick you into gear.

v USE THE ELEMENT OF SURPRISE AND DEFEND YOURSELF. I have discussed surprise strategies in so many past posts that I don’t think I will go into them here and now. Not only that, Tactics of Surprise cannot be taught in a blog. They must come from you depending on what you perceive the attacker least expects.

v EXECUTE THE PLAN YOU HAD DEVELOPED. The reason I say I know what I would do in this or that case is I know I would always have a Plan A and even a Plan B (failure plan)  in mind before any attack began, especially if I found myself in a situation where I felt an attack was a possibility.

Stay Safe.




My last post – let’s face it – was basically me venting after the senseless murder of a Yale graduate student – a woman – in the supposedly high security lab environment of that esteemed university. The police have dubbed the murder as workplace violence, and, although I don’t completely agree, I posted a monograph on Woman and Workplace Violence (WPV). As I promised at the end of that post, let’s talk a bit about how to effectively deal – on a personal level – with people and events that seem to be cascading toward all –out violence on the job site.


v Contact with the public.

v Responsibilities include the exchange of money.

v The delivery of passengers, goods and/or service.

v Working alone or in small numbers.

v Working with volatile, unstable person(s), et al.

v Working late at night or in the early morning hours.

v Working in a high crime area.

v Guarding valuable properties, including drugs, etc.

v Delivery of home care services.

As you may have noticed, only two of those factors existed relative to the murder of Ms. Lee. She was working alone and she was working in the same location as what turned out to be a volatile, unstable person.


If at all possible, of course, work in the company of people whom you trust. More likely than not, if Ms. Lee had, the angry, emotionally disturbed and volatile person would have stewed in his own rage for a while and gone on his way, leaving Ms. Lee unharmed.

However, if you read my last post (Lust Or WPV?), you might be aware that homicide is the number one cause of death for women (in the workplace). You would also know that incidents of stalking, rape, sexual assault, and other types of violence are visited on women in alarmingly increasing numbers.

My point: Even if she would have gone to the Yale lab with one or two friends, the perpetrator likely would have attempted to stalk, trap and attack Ms. Lee when she was alone and vulnerable.

What then are some of the Red Flags, or Signatures of Danger, you can use to help you profile someone you want to either stay clear of, or, more likely, prepare a self defense plan against?

v A history of violence, stalking, etc. (The Perp in this case had this history).

v He/She has stalked or harassed another worker in the past.

v Some or Many of your co-workers communicate that they also feel uncomfortable around this person.

v The worker is almost always rigid, inflexible, intransigent in how he/she handles work and social-related issues.

v Displays signs of chronic sadness, hopelessness, depression.

v The worker often states his or her hopelessness.

v The worker identifies with past perpetrators of spectacular WPV.

v A Fascination with guns and other weapons.

v Reacts poorly to criticism.

v Projects blame onto others.

v Sees himself as being on a One-Man Crusade.

Ok, so you recognize several of these factors, plus, importantly, you and others feel terribly uncomfortable around the worker, plus, and now I refer to the Yale Incident, he strides toward you, his face contorted in rage, his fists clenched, and he is about to invade your PSZ (Personal Safety Zone).

What do you do?

Stay Tuned For the Next Post. Until Then, Stay Safe.