Little Red is the symbol for all who were abused in the name of love. Nothing is more sinister than believing we are loved and safe only to be ravaged by a wolf in the fold. Little Red thought Grandma’s house was safe and so did we. It was shocking to find ourselves lied to and abused by the very people who were supposed to love and protect us.

There are many endings to the story of Little Red throughout history and across cultures. In one of the most ancient versions, Little Red didn’t wait to get rescued but took matters into her own hands. She outsmarts Wolf by telling him she needs to go to the outhouse. Wolf allows her to go as long as she keeps a string tied around her finger. Once Red was out of Wolf’s sight, she wisely tied the string to the outhouse door and ran for her life.

I love this quaint version of Little Red because she didn’t suffer as a victim, nor did she require a prince or woodsman to rescue her—she rescued herself. You and I can do that too.

Here are some lessons we can learn from Little Red.

1. Even People You Know Can Be Dangerous

2. It’s Not Your Fault

3. Trust Your Gut

4. Use Your Power

The wolf might be howling in anger because he’s been locked up or he might threaten to stalk Little Red again, but he can’t shut up her voice. She has told the world what he’s done and now he has no power over her.

5. Enjoy Your Life

Those flowers Little Red was picking along the path of life are still fragrant as they were before. Huckleberries taste just as sweet. The bluebird of happiness sings as joyfully as she ever did. The sun still shines on our backs and the woods are always beautiful and full of mystery. Love is in the air, so take some time to enjoy life and dream of the possibilities, but always remember to trust your gut.