I faced my worst nightmare last week. In fact, now that I am in Portland, and staying in my youngest daughter's home, do I even feel like talking about it.
My daughter, home sick, had just gone to bed. She had been in bed about twenty minutes when she heard someone enter the house. She called out to her roommate, no answer. She called her roommate's name again. No answer, but she heard footsteps coming down the hall. She entered the hall and there was a man. A tall, gangly man standing in her hall. She screamed out at him something to the effect: "What the hell are you doing in my house?" He turned around and walked out, shutting the door behind him.
Since then, her roommate said she thought she had noticed a man in their backyard a while back, but "thought he was talking to my daughter through her window." (In the middle of the night.) These are college girls. So I am not going to go into what I thought about that statement, or the fact my daughter wasn't quite sure the door was locked before she went to bed. I am beyond amazed. Have I not taught them anything? Have I not emphasized safety, above all else?? Have I not told the story over and over of the peeping tom/stalker I dealt with for months when I was single and living alone? What exactly do I have to do to get them to take living alone seriously in this day and age? (I came home today and opened the unlocked door, walking right in on my daughter's young roommate. She said she thought it was such a pretty day, that it couldn't possibly include an intruder.)
So now what? The locks have been changed, additional door locks added, windows checked, but should I get her something to carry in her purse? Pepper spray, a taser? If anything happened to her, I know I would wish I had done that. So what would you do?