Consent is permission for something to happen or an agreement to do something. Consent is not always determined by yes or no, which is why we should talk about it--why it's imperative we talk about it. In sexual encounters, consent should be a dialogue about needs, desires, and comfort level. Healthy relationships, both sexual and non-sexual, are rooted in consent and respect.
what is consent?
I believe by talking about and teaching consent, we will create more aware and empathetic human beings and thus more productive and supportive communities. It is important to teach people, particularly young people, both how to know and confidently voice their boundaries while respecting and abiding to the boundaries of their peers. All of the topics I cover in my various workshops are ultimately about being more confident, kind, authentic and inclusive. We all come from different backgrounds, go through varying experiences, and have different genetic make-ups; that is a beautiful truth of the human condition. Consent education will help us, as a collective community, celebrate this diversity, foster inclusive values and to listen to one another--to listen is to respect, learn and grow. Let's grow together.
why teach it?
Check out these resources and articles I've curated for you that expound upon the importance of consent education:
- "Everyday Consent Sheet" - National Sexual Violence Resource Center (NSVRC)
- "Paving the way to a culture of consent" - NSVRC
- "Saying Yes to Consent Education" - Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development (ASCD)