In 2005, Lions Gate Entertainment released the Oscar-winning drama, Crash. The film was about the overall social tensions that existed within Los Angeles, California.
While driving home, married couple Cameron and Christine—played by Terrance Howard and Thandie Newton, respectively—were pulled over by two police officers. During the stop, LAPD officer John Ryan administered a pat down on Christine, while Cameron was restrained and searched by officer Tom Hansen. As tears fell from his wife’s face, Cameron could only watch as Officer Ryan groped Christine’s posterior and slid his hand under her gown, creeping toward her vaginal area. Cameron desperately apologized to Christine, but her feelings of anger, embarrassment, and disappointment resulted in her frowning toward the man she loves.
She did not feel protected.
There is no question that women are capable of accomplishing the same feats of men-see Hillary Clinton and Rhonda Rousey. Though this is true, it’s been established that many women look toward the ‘alpha male’ as an ideal spouse. Alpha males have been deemed as cool, confident, and most importantly, a protector of their significant other. A tragic event can possibility change the perception one holds for their spouse, no longer viewing him as the person they saw before.
So what is a man to do when he does not protect his spouse from a threat that was not predictable? Is it reasonable for a woman to not feel as confident in her man’s ability to physically keep her safe if he has failed to do so?
After leaving a Missouri club, Alex Vessey and Meredith Cole were attacked in an alley by a group of six men. Prior to the attack, Cole was outside the Outland Ballroom when the group approached and sexually assaulted her. This prompted Cole to enter the club and notify her boyfriend, Vessey. Disturbed by the incident, the couple exited the club, entering a nearby alley. There, Vessey was repeatedly punched and kicked in the chest, legs, and face by complete strangers, while Cole was pushed and dragged to the ground.
When asked about the experience, Cole described it as “embarrassing,” “uncomfortable,” and “intimidating.”
A similar event happened at a Memphis, Tennessee gas station, where Orrden Williams, Jr. was attacked by a group of more than thirty teenagers from a local high school. After being repeatedly punched, Williams dashed to his car to protect his girlfriend and three-month old infant. While Williams entered the vehicle, one of the teenagers threw a punch that was within inches of Williams’s child. The vehicle was vandalized as the teenagers attempted to enter it and get to the man’s family. Luckily, the three were able to get away without receiving significant injuries.
In 2012, James Holmes arrived to an Aurora, Colorado movie theatre, purchased a ticket for a midnight showing of The Dark Knight Rises, and killed 12 people—while harming 70 others—during a mass shooting. At least eight of the victims were on a date with their significant other.
While dating, individuals tend to engage in conversations that cover a variety of topics. From asking about weird ex-boyfriends, to your date’s career aspirations, no issue is too big or small when trying to envision yourself with another person. It may be time to consider asking a spouse their opinions on how to handle an unfortunate situation. Just make sure that whatever you do, your decision is motivated upon your feelings of affection and love. Making a decision based on fear is a danger in itself.