3 Things True Crime Podcasts Have Taught Me About Staying Alive

Despite listening to True Crime Podcasts on a weekly basis and them being such a huge portion of the content I typically tune into, it wasn’t until recently that I’ve begun to ponder what exactly the takeaway is. It’s so easy to listen to these horrifying cases and separate yourself from these realities, saying stuff like “that can’t happen to me,” or “I wouldn’t be that naive,” but truth is, it can happen to any of us. The moment I realized this, I approached these podcasts as not just a form of entertainment but also as a helpful tool for staying alive and surviving the circumstances that took the lives of the many people whose stories are being told. If you would’ve asked me a year ago, whether or not I carried any sort of protection as a young woman who often did many things alone, you would’ve been shocked at my disillusionment. I was very ignorant when it came to realizing that these things we hear about on the news could also happen to me. For this very reason, I will be unpacking the Crime Junkie Podcast’s iconic catchphrase “Be Weird. Be Rude. Stay Alive,” in hopes of keeping you vigilant and aware as a woman in this day and age. 

  1. 1. Be Weird.

    Do you ever just get a gut feeling during an interaction. Your pulse starts racing and your arm hairs raise up, but you don’t want to seem weird or read into things. I am here to tell you, LISTEN TO THAT FEELING. More often than not, your senses alert you when something is off even if it may not look like it on the exterior. There have been many cases where the victim had interacted with the perpetrator before their timely demise and even expressed their discomfort with the interaction. Don’t doubt yourself or your gut feeling, who cares if it’s weird... I would much rather be weird and alive than otherwise. 

  2. 2. Be Rude.

    As women socialized in a patriarchal society, we have often been taught and raised to be “nice,” regardless of whether a given encounter makes us uncomfortable or places us in danger. We instinctively find ourselves apologizing for not wanting to be placed in uncomfortable situations or not wanting to engage with people we are not comfortable with. This specific portion of the catchphrase really resonated with me because the hosts Ashley and Brit really encourage the female audience to be rude and unapologetic about avoiding interactions that make us uncomfortable. Be rude, and as a result stay alive. You don’t owe anyone anything, especially when it impedes on your safety and well-being. There have been so many occasions where I remain in an uncomfortable, and even unsafe, interaction in order to be "nice" and not hurt the other person's feelings. It is not our job to tiptoe around someone who is making us uncomfortable in order to avoid upsetting them, but rather their job to understand that they are not entitled to your time and energy. 

  3. 3. Stay Alive.

    Lastly, stay alive. Whether it is sharing your location with loved ones, carrying a taser or pepper spray, walking out to your car at night with a buddy, or being aware of your surroundings. I’m not saying to track your every single move or live in constant paranoia, but take some measures to make sure that something like this never happens to you. You can never control the actions and intentions of others, but you can certainly take precautions to make sure you are safe. Although it's not fair and shouldn’t be the case that women have to take so many precautions to stay safe, it is better that we are proactive given the circumstances, than otherwise.

So all in all, "Be Weird. Be Rude. Stay Alive." And encourage others to do so as well. Never be sorry for doing all that's in your power to ensure your own safety.