By Pavel Pantoja
Social media, news and front pages are flooded with news regarding violence against women. This causes fear and fear is paralyzing, restricts our freedom, reduces attention, productivity, life itself. Dangers seem to have increased nowadays, going out to the street appears to be less and less safe. Considering this, should we live in fear?
We cannot deny the reality of a country that has been plagued by violence for decades. A place where justice doesn't seem to work, and danger is everywhere. For both, men and women. However, for women there are factors which increase risks and vulnerability. Femicide, abuse and harassment indexes continue to grow. Violence has always existed, but now it spreads more thanks to social media.
This leads to widespread fear climate. A question arises, how useful is fear? Fear helps detonate a response to danger, whether by fleeing or defense (attack). Fear itself is therefore beneficial as a survival mechanism. However, if you live in fear, it becomes ineffective, first because being afraid of everything causes us to lose sight of what we should fear. It's like using antibiotics for everything. Second, because it becomes an obstacle, it becomes useless. It's like if we thought we were going to fall all the time. In addition to exhaustion, people who live in fear maintain a high level of anxiety, stress and even hopelessness occur.
We can't say either, "Well, I'm not afraid anymore, everything's perfect." Not really. What we can do is be more alert of our environment. Identify which situations, places, or behaviors pose a risk or reduce our attention. For example, we should not walk with our cell phones in the street. Not only because we are more vulnerable, we can also fall. It's better to look for solutions, such as using emergency applications (Tracknest or 911), having trust and mutual help networks, and even exercising can help in certain cases.
Anxiety provoked by fear may difficult our existence. We shouldn’t become used to live that way since it only provokes disadvantages. It is better to be aware and prepared as much as possible. Living in fear is not living.
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