As an Uber driver, I hear a lot of stories. First thing in the morning on weekends, you get the lost crowd. These are the folks who never quite made it home the night before. Sometimes they are just finishing up partying. Other times, they went to a party only to crash there or with a friend. Lots of times they met someone while they were out and went home with them. Believe it or not, I also pick up quite a few prostitutes at that time….and folks headed to the airport.
Last weekend, I had one of my most disturbing calls. I was en route, when the passenger called my cell to see how far away I was. She explained that she had never used Uber, and said that she was in a predicament. I just hoped that I wasn’t showing up to a case of domestic violence in progress. I found her outside her hotel lobby, and she looked like many of the young women I give safe passage to at this time of morning. She was wearing part of an outfit that was clearly from the night before, her eye makeup was sliding down her cheeks, and she carried a plastic bag containing the rest of her belongings.
As I drove toward her home, she told me her story. She had been talking to an older gentleman (mid thirties- ten years older than she was). They had met in person once, and the night before was their first date. He picked her up, took her to dinner, and then to a bar. At some point, he had a friend come pick them up and they went to a hotel. She was probably drunk enough at that point that she didn’t realize how fishy that sounds. She said he had done everything right at that point – picked her up, bought her dinner and drinks….we are socialized to assume a man will treat us well if he does certain things.
So, she found herself in a hotel room with tho men she didn’t really know. She said she remembers taking a shower…..and then waking up alone and naked. She woke in a panic, felt the need to physically feel her body to see if she were hurt, and checked her purse to see if anything were missing.
The truly scarry thing is that she still did not seem to understand what might have happened to her. I would be willing to bet that these guys slipped something into her drink at the hotel and assaulted her. I tried to broach the subject, but she completely ignored it. I hope that she is safe, and that at some point she can deal with this.
Ladies….be safe! Be smart! If you’re dating, stay in public places until you really know someone. Be the one in control of a situation. Use condoms….and most of all, use common sense!