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Home » tvChix Articles » Guide for Personal Safety, When Meeting People

A Guide to Personal Safety When Meeting People

In a perfect world, there are no strangers, only friends you have yet to meet. We don't live in a perfect world, however, and so need to take precautions. This can be especially true when either meeting up with someone from the internet or hooking up with someone during a night on the town. One of the biggest mistakes that people make when it comes to their safety is being overly confident and believing that they could handle any dangerous situation that might arise. It's much safer to follow these steps to avoid potential dangers entirely, however.

Meet in Public

No matter how trustworthy someone seems online or on the phone, it's in your best interests to have your first meeting in public. If you become uncomfortable or notice that the other person had lied about what to expect, it's easy for you to leave. For your own safety, you should never meet with anyone who refuses to have your first face to face meeting in public.

Good places to meet are usually cafes or restaurants and shops. Setting your meeting for the afternoon is better than at night, because there will be more people around and it will be easier to see. Don't have the person you're meeting pick you up from your home or vice versa.

Tell a Friend

Whenever you are meeting up with someone, you should inform a friend of where you're going, whom you're meeting, and how long you expect to be gone. Your friend should be prepared to call you and find out what's happening if you have not contacted them by the time you said you would. Your friend doesn't have to be kept updated on everything you're doing, but having someone checking in on you in case something goes wrong could help save you from any number of bad situations.

Beware False Intimacy

One of the dangers of meeting people online is that it can create a sense of closeness very quickly. Our insecurities are easily masked, while it becomes easier to express things that are usually hidden. The problem with this is that while you may have opened up and told a great deal about yourself, you have no guarantees that the other person has been similarly honest.

Even if they are honest, the things you learn about someone from speaking online or on the phone aren't the same things you learn in person. Internet communication is entirely about how someone presents and views him or herself, while when you meet someone in person you can see their body language, the hesitation over answering a question, and how they treat others.

Take Things Slowly

Because of the danger of that false intimacy, you may be tempted to view your relationship with this new person as very serious early on. Just remind yourself that the time spent in one another's company can be far more valuable for evaluating trust and compatibility than the time spent conversing from a distance. Your trust should be something earned, not given freely.

Many great love stories and long-lasting friendships have begun with two strangers from the internet meeting up for lunch. Not all such meetings go well, though. The closeness found online may not exist in person, leading to disappointment. Physical attraction may be nonexistent in a romantic meeting. Predators who would take advantage of you or cause you harm must also be watched for.

None of these concerns should stop you from meeting people, however. Simply take some basic safety precautions and be careful not to lose your heart or your head too quickly.



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