It was the perfect practical weapon, I could easily feel the surface of the unit to orient the flash forward in my hand, and there was a manual trigger button that my index finger naturally lined up with.
I would explain in advance to my date that if I squeezed her arm really hard, she should close her eyes until she saw the flash. (You could see the flash through closed eyelids.) But I also realized that she might not get the message in time, so I planned to immediately pull her to safety.
The idea was to incapacitate any aggressor(s) without physically harming them and, at the same time, not allowing them to get close enough to be a real threat. All I had to do was manually point my hand in the general direction of the (maybe) bad guy(s) and squeeze the button while remembering to close my eyes for half a second. No one being hit with an unexpected flash of this magnitude and having night adjusted vision was going to be able to see anything for at least thirty seconds. By then we were back in the bar or in the car and gone.
I only used it once on two guys that were approaching from near my car and calling out, “Hey dude, got a light?”
The first rule of self defence is to avoid the confrontation.
But if you must, if you have no other choice, this would be better and safer, in most circumstance. Plus it’s less lethal than firearm. The object should be to stop an attack. Not to kill anyone. It would be legal too, in most, if not every country in the world.