It has been argued that in self protection situations there are two battles; the actual event and then the aftermath. The aftermath may be explaining your actions to the Police or dealing with the black dog. Now we know that there is some truth in this argument although it's more... nuanced than that. The notion of "better to be tried by 12" is outdated.
However something that I've been forced to consider is the parallels with childhood bullying. As someone who did personally experience childhood bullying, as a nurse who has treated the victims of bullying and as a martial arts instructor teaching the recipients of bullying I strongly believe that the two battle is a genuine and current phenomenon. Frequently the victim will fear less their actions and more the reprisals. My student or patient's parents and I will be in congruence in educating the victim that they CAN use the skills I'm giving them and they DO have a right to defend themself including pre-emption. However this is in opposition to the post-event information that they get from teachers. Granted the problem is muddied by the bullys' lies.
In my view this is the single biggest challenge in bullying. And I don't have an answer.
My juniors understand that they CAN act but they need to be able to explain why and what action they took beforehand. But this falls on the deaf ears of the teachers.
I welcome your thoughts and advice on this.