Holiday parties offer us the opportunity to get all dressed up, hang out with friends, family and co-workers, and generally have a great time. These social events can be so much fun but unfortunately can also carry some threats to your safety.
Top 15 Ways to Increase Your Safety as You Hop from Party to Party:
1. You are in control of you. If attending a party where you know most of the people, do not assume that they will take care of you if you drink too much.
2. Moderate the amount of alcohol you consume, especially if you have not had enough food to eat. It is very difficult to determine if a situation may be dangerous for you if you are not in complete control of your faculties. In addition, don't expect to rely on your gut instinct if your judgment is clouded by alcohol.
3. Make sure to eat food as the evening progresses, and don't worry about the calories (that's what control top under garments are for). Another good suggestion is to drink a glass of water for every alcoholic beverage you consume.
4. ID and Cash: Make sure that you have enough cash/cards and identification so that you can be in control of going to and from parties.
5. Keep an eye on your drink at all times. It is recommended that if possible make your drink yourself, so that you are in complete control over what is mixed into the drink.
6. Do not leave your drink unattended -- at any time. If you put your drink down, even briefly, discard it and grab a fresh one - which again, hopefully you have made yourself.
7. If at an event where drinks are made by a professional bartender then watch the drink being made.
8. It may be worth considering purchasing drink testing strips which can detect the presence of "date rape" drugs and actually use them in social situations where others may have access to your drink.
9. Always let someone know where you are, what parties you are attending and who you are with.
10. If attending a party with a friend or friends use the "buddy system" to keep track of each other and use a signal (word or gesture) to alert each other about potentially dangerous situations.
11. Do not leave a party with a stranger even if it is easier to take an offer of a ride as opposed to waiting for a cab or public transit... you do not know them well enough to trust them.
12. Try to avoid the random hook up. Again, you have no real knowledge about who they are, what their intentions are, or even if they have a criminal background. If it is worth it to get to know this person, then you can meet them in a public place, check them out on social media and progress slowly and safely as you get to know one another.
13. The prevalence of social media posts, especially photos, once loaded up onto the internet will survive FOREVER -- so control your behavior at parties. You do not want to lose a promotion at work because of a night of out-of-control drinking and partying.
14. If partying with friends, decide beforehand who will serve as the designated driver.
15. Never drink and drive and never, ever, get into a car with a drunk driver.
These 15 holiday safety tips take into account the real fact that not all people have good intentions. Unfortunately there are opportunists out there who will not hesitate to take advantage of a drunken young woman -- with potentially dire consequences. Aside from learning self-defense as a means of self-protection; a woman owes it to herself to maintain control in social situations. No amount of partying ever compensated for the subsequent fallout from not having complete control of oneself and dealing with dangerous or humiliating situations.
The last post of the Eat, Drink and be Merry... with an Eye on Your Safety! series will touch on the topic of Holiday Travelling Safety.
Stay Safe, Live Well!™