Common Misconceptions about 'Stranger Danger'

We've all heard it before and especially at an early age...

Baaahhhh!!!

Now, I am not encouraging children to approach strangers because there are obvious risky dangers behind that - - that is different. However, does this still apply to Adulthood? From my own observations, I have noticed there are certain contexts where talking to strangers seem to be more acceptable in society compared to other - - not so acceptable contexts. For instance, going to a public event and networking for career purposes seem to be all right - - exchanging business cards as well as designating a future lunch/dinner. I cannot help but feel that, even as adults, there are still some misconceptions about strangers...especially when it has to do with other contexts. Please do not forget that my opinions have come solely from my own personal experiences regarding strangers! ;)

Misconception #1
It is dangerous to accept a ride from a stranger, they might drive off the road and hurt, kidnap, or kill you. 

Now, I am not saying any of the above scenarios will NEVER happen because it's an absolute possibility. However, I feel that people risk his/her lives by simply stepping outside of their front door or commuting in the carpool lane to work. Although I'm not saying hitchhiking and rideshare websites such as Covoiturage are always going to be 100% trustworthy, sometimes life is more interesting when you take risks while on the road. Personally, I'm glad I did try that website out because I wouldn't be here in Lille (as well as made a new friend!) and most importantly - - overcame my initial fears with the website by doing, not assuming.  With that being said, it's really your call but always trust your instincts and always be conscious to catch any red flags early on!

Misconception #2
Do not accept an invitation to a stranger's home. 



Honestly, not all strangers are out to hurt you! Call me an idealist, but I'd like to think that people are inherently good. If I had never given Couchsurfing a shot and gotten over my fears about strangers - - essentially eliminating all the assumptions made about someone I don't even know, I would NOT have met some of the most kind-hearted, trustworthy, and hospitable people I know today!

Misconception #3
All strangers are bad.

Now, that's just silly! Aren't we all, essentially strangers then? Does that mean we are all bad? Absolutely not! 

The point of this blog post is to remind everyone that we are all strangers and yes, there are dangerous people out there. But, if it is more likely that we get into a car wreck commuting to work on Monday morning than a stranger doing harm to you, then it could be more refreshing to see the world in a different, more positive light. I'm always a huge advocate for travelers to be on guard but sometimes..

The most beautiful moments are created when we take the biggest risks of all. Life is a gamble so kick those assumptions to the curb and live a little; you never know until you actually experience it for yourself (and that can apply to anything). Here are some more pictures from Lille, France - hanging out with my new friend that I met from Covoiturag.fr - - while helping her get settled into her new place:

(Pictures of us having tea-time, an old chair/toilet (lol), dinosaur butts for coat hangers, and lots of good food)

I'm glad I took the risk to debunk some 'stranger danger' myths. Otherwise, I wouldn't have half the precious memories/experiences I have shared with you thus far!!


MsCathy.








2 comments:

  1. yeah i think i can feel that .
    and that is why we should learn to open our heart , talk and communicate to strangers more.
    good people predominate in every part after all.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Well said, Andrew. My thoughts exactly! Once we learn to open our hearts, it's almost overwhelming to experience the warmth and compassion that encompasses this small world.

    ReplyDelete

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