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Old November 29, 2012, 02:52 PM   #55
Join Date: May 16, 2000
Location: Washington state
Posts: 7,478
I mentioned earlier that I tried to get my wife to go to Pax's site ( and she won't. Pax, what is your advise on the matter?
Seriously self-serving here, but you asked: buy the book. Read it. Don't try to hand it to her or talk her into reading it. Just read it, and sometimes leave it lying around somewhere accessible when you leave the house. (The cover is fun, not scary, and if she asks you can say you know the author online, and that I told you there's good stuff in it for guys too.)

That said? There's absolutely nothing you can do to "make" another adult do something they don't want to do. You can raise barriers or lower them, and that's about it.

To lower the barriers and make it easier for her to think a little more about her own safety, try providing just a little information. Mostly, you'll need to ask lots of questions.

The information could be something like showing her the statistics for how many times houses in your area have been broken into during the day, or if there's been a recent news story about this particular scam, draw that to her attention. Not in a negative or judgmental way, just as a "wow, I didn't realize this was so common..." Then shut up.

That's the key: shut up and let her think about it. Don't add another word and don't lecture with a bunch of should-have's and ought-to's. Just provide the information and shut up. It might make her start asking questions, which would be your goal.

Later, other times, you can ask questions. When a news story about crime comes on the TV while you're watching it together, say something like, "Wow, that was really rough. What do you think those people should have done?" Then shut up. Shut up and listen to her answers. Don't correct her ideas or squash them, no matter how misguided they seem to be. Just ask the question and shut up.

Why do I say that shutting up is the key? Because your true goal is to get the questions into her mind. You want to plant little time-bomb questions in her mind. When you keep talking, especially if she feels like you are forcing "the answer" down her throat, she will argue against the answers, which means she'll never even think about the question or even realize there was one.

But if, instead, you focus on the question, and make it her question to answer, she'll have to go look for the answers for herself.

Once she realizes the questions are there and that they are her questions, your job is done. Because a woman who's looking for answers about safety from violent crime will always be safer than one who is not.

Kathy Jackson
My personal website: Cornered Cat
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