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How to create a Consent Culture?
Consent culture is a culture in which asking for consent is normalized and condoned in popular culture. It is respecting the person’s response even if it isn’t the response you had hoped for. We will live in a consent culture when we no longer objectify people and we value them as human beings. Consent culture is believing that you and your partner(s) have the right over your own bodily autonomies and understanding that each of you know what is best for yourselves.
Living in a consent culture means not feeling weird or embarrassed to ask someone if they want to move forward. It means not feeling bad if you aren’t interested anymore. Open dialogue and mutual respect for your partner(s) and yourself will create a safe space for the both (or all) of you.
Consent culture isn’t exclusive to sex or sexual activity.
Not insisting that someone try a bite of food and instead allowing them the space to choose not to eat any is consent culture. It’s also not tickling someone when they don’t want to be tickled. It’s asking before you start and it’s also stopping when you are told to stop.
Consent culture is understanding that each person knows what is best for themselves. You have no right to use your power against them for their decision not to participate.
Some ways you can generate consent culture are by:
- Not street harassing anyone
- Asking for consent
- Respecting the answer
- Listening to the likes and dislikes of your partner(s) and not pushing the boundaries
- Being a good bystander. If you see something happening that looks sketchy try to help the person instead of turning your back because you feel like it isn’t your problem.
- Stopping when you are asked or told to stop.