There are many reasons women decide to take the steps needed to find a way to empower themselves to protect themselves.  Some may decide to carry a firearm and some maybe a Taser, pepper spray or take a self-defense class.  Everyone's story is different.  Here’s mine…

As a kid, I was never involved in politics or had firearms introduced to me, not really.  I remember my dad having a rifle that leaned against the wall by our front door.  We knew as kids not to touch it, but there was no fear seeing it there in my home every day, It was just part of the house. I grew up in a very small town in Maine so I had family members who hunted and who shot for fun at my grandpa's farm. Also my grandfather and uncle were both US Marine veterans. But we never really discussed their service or firearms. I led a pretty sheltered life. I knew that I had mostly conservative views growing up but I was brought up in household that had very little affiliations with any political party so my decision to become a conservative women came from the good old fashioned values that my father instilled in me.

Like most kids I went away to college after high school, excited and naïve. My college campus was large and I lived in the freshman dorm, the furthest walk from the main buildings where classes were held.  They had a bus system, but one of my classes was late, and buses stopped running so most nights I had to walk back.  It was about a 40 minute walk back to my dorm, which most nights I walked alone. Honestly I did it most nights without any fear.  I remember when I went away to school my father gave me a small can of pocket mace, that my resident adviser in my first week of school took from me and replaced with a red whistle. A red whistle! I walked around campus for a week with that red whistle, and deep down I knew that this whistle would never protect me. And it didn’t! I was attacked and raped a week later by a man in a dark corner outside my dorm building. I never thought once during the attack, where is my whistle? That man took something from me that night but also instilled in me the determination to never be a victim again. NEVER. If I was allowed to carry on my campus and knew the importance of carrying a firearm back then, I could have changed the outcome of the horrible night for me. I could have saved myself. I SURVIVED and will NEVER be a victim again.

After leaving the hospital I never went back to that college campus.  I was angry, scared and defeated.  I thought I could never get my strength back and I would always be afraid. I'll be honest it took me a long time to not feel that way.  I stayed afraid for a long time, too long.  Finding firearm training and empowering myself to be able to protect myself gave me strength again.  I knew if I trained, stayed vigilant and carried I would always be able to defend myself and my family from evil.  Now everyone is different, this is just my story.

As a woman I am so thankful that the Second Amendment affirms my natural right to protect myself in my home, in my car, at all times! I believe it is so important to support women on college campuses, in our cities and small towns by educating them and creating a strong community around them to empower them to protect themselves by carrying a firearm if they so choose. The Carry Girl movement is that community.