Consent is something everyone has to learn. Many times when consent is brought up it is spoken about like it is meant for only heterosexual men. Whatever your sexual orientation, it is important to always seek consent before proceeding with a sexual act.
People are often at a stump saying if they have to ask for consent before proceeding doesn’t that kill the vibe or make them seem lame. No, it doesn’t. No matter how heated things get. It takes a quick second to ask “Are you okay with this?”, “Do you want to continue?”, “Is this okay?”, “Do you want this?”
Consent is important because it guarantees healthy, wholesome sexual relation that is free of guilt, regret, trauma and the risk of infectious diseases.
Consent allows you to also be clear about the intentions of your partner. And means there’s no pressure for them to do something they do not want to do. One might want to kiss but not want to get fondled by their breasts. One might want to get to third base, and not want penile penetration. Sometimes a person just wants a dry hump, the fact that they kissed you back or even took off their clothes doesn’t mean they want to go all the way with a sexual activity and the responsible thing to do each step of the way is for both partners to actively seek consent as things proceed.
A lot of times, consent being sought for on a level by level basis is more common for first time sexual partners. Couples who have been together for a while usually have a system for things. A person could send their partner raunchy text messages during the day while they are at work and ask at some point “Do you want to have sex tonight?” or put it in any other fun, naughty manner or language that they, as a couple communicates with themselves. The partner could then answer in the affirmative, giving consent to sex when they meet up later that evening. People can change their minds however, and it is important to check in with your partner to know if they are still in the mood for what was agreed earlier. Sex is not just a physical activity it is also a psychological one, and many times our moods may betray us. So it’s okay if someone withdraws consent and say they just want to lie down and cuddle instead.
In understanding consent, we must know that our partners' bodies do not belong to us, it belongs to them and only them and when they share their body with us, it must be done on their terms and with their permission. Anything else is sexual assault and rape which are federal crimes and carry heavy punishment.
But how then do you ask for consent? Just say it. Depending on how close the other person is to you, depending on the mood of things at the moment, how you say it could range from the romantic to the crude. But be sure you ask for consent. Whether you’re kissing, fondling or penetrating and that you get a verbal affirmation.