“I came across this statement the other day:
‘Men need to get better at reading signals, women need to get better at verbalizing their limits, and both genders need to stop taking rejection so personally.‘
Can people tell me what you think of this? To me consent is straight forward. But what if signals are confused? Miscommunication happens. How do we prevent it? “
As the mother of both a son and a daughter, I think we need to get much better about teaching both genders how to ask for and give consent. IMO, sex with a new partner always needs to start with a conversation and setting fixed boundaries for the experience (e.g. – I’m ok with oral and digital sex tonight but not penetrative sex) and then those boundaries don’t get crossed unless there is a total stop of all play and a new discussion.
BTW, the kink community has fantastic guidelines around consent and that’s where I go for inspiration when I discuss it with my kids (they are still a little young for the full conversation).
One acronym that I learned from kink is EPIC consent.
E – Enthusiastic: an unenthusiastic yes should be treated as a no.
P – Personal: any consent is limited to the person it was given to. While that’s super-relevant in a group sex setting, it’s just as relevant for a Frat Party.
I – (not) Intoxicated: if a person is under the influence of drugs or alcohol that cannot give consent.
C – Continuous: consent can be withdrawn at any time and for any reason. No is a complete sentence.