This article was published on January 27th, 2016
As the use of geo-location based networking apps skyrocket, it has become increasingly easier to hook up. Random guys show up at your door, come in, and in less than 15 seconds you’re both naked and in the heat of the moment. But without warning you could be in a very dangerous situation. You could be sexually abused, physically assaulted, tied up and robbed, or worse. Here are five hook-up safety tips that you need to know to avoid an unforeseen situation:
Get to know each other
Before you agree to meet up, talk and get to know each other. Exchange pictures, talk about common interests, physical descriptions, and other things to build credibility and trust between each other. There’s no obligation to meet right away.
Meet in public
Instead of giving out your home address and having a random stranger enter your home, ask to meet in a public location. Meeting in public allows you to physically see each other, and be seen by others. Predators tend not to want to meet in public, and this could be warning signal for you.
Protect your identity
Keep your personal information private. This goes beyond not giving out your home address, birth date, social insurance number, etc. It also includes making sure your wallet, keys, passport, and other valuables are hidden and out of sight.
Leave a trail
If you have concerns about meeting someone new, either in public, at their house, or at your own home, you can protect yourself by leaving information in an easily accessible location in the case that something does go wrong. For instance, you can leave a note on your kitchen counter with the details about who you are meeting, the meeting location, the approximate time, description of the person, and if you have it, their contact information.
The more photos, the better. You want to be confident that the person you are talking with is the person they are claiming to be. More photos will allow you to judge if it’s a real person, or an imposter or impersonator. If the person is reluctant to send photos or claims to be discrete, you do not need to go forward with meeting. It’s not uncommon for guys to also use old and out-of-date, or deceiving photos. Be cautious.
In addition to these tips and pieces of advice it is important to know that if you’re not comfortable or ready to meet, it is perfectly acceptable to politely decline or ask to postpone until you feel better about the situation. Your safety is most important.