2 weeks ago, we had a problem with the venue of one of our lectures. There was a meeting there that was taking forever so we couldn’t get into the lecture hall. Students were everywhere, on the corridor and on the staircase. My friend and I sat on a table, we were talking of random things which I can’t recall now. Suddenly she had this look on her face, it was an expression of pain or maybe discomfort, I could not differentiate at that point. So I asked if I could press/grab the leg lol! She said no but I went ahead and she kept saying don’t touch it but I kept touching the leg, I did it a few more times before I stopped. I later found out the sole of her left foot was itchy and it was very uncomfortable.
I felt guilty for a week after this. And I kept replaying this scene in my head. Why? I touched my friend against her consent. You might laugh it off but this is really serious. Some years back this wouldn’t have been a problem but it is a problem now because I took out time to educate myself on consent and what I know about consent now is not what I knew few years ago. My friend’s leg is hers and I had no right to touch it without her permission but I did and even when she objected I didn’t stop touching it. *now covering my face in shame*
Yes it might not have hurt her, but i did it against her will and without her consent and that makes it wrong.
I see people arguing about what is rape and what is not and from all the points people make the only problem I always observe is that people do not have an understanding of what consent is. If we have an understanding on what consent is, the world will be a better and safe place.
“Consent is about me: my body, my mind, and my choices. My consent is required to access the things that I own. You do not need my consent to act, because I do not own your body, your mind, or your choices. However, if your behavior crosses into my personal space, then you need my consent” – http://www.morethantwo.com
Consent not only applies to sexual relationships but to our everyday life.
Before you take something that doesn’t belong to you, ask! Before you touch someone, ask! If you are entering into someone’s personal space you need consent! Let’s be sensitive about this issue!
Consent is not permanent, someone can give you consent but once they say no, no it is!
Have you heard of the Okafor law? Hmm, it isn’t even funny! That’s the dumbest thing I’ve heard regarding consent.
“Okafor’s Law states that once a man has had a woman, he can have her again at any time, and a believer in the law puts it to a test with past girlfriends over a 21-day period”
This law is from a Nigerian romantic comedy drama. I will bring myself to watch this movie someday!
I’m sorry if you live by this law, I pray you don’t end up in jail.
If you didn’t learn anything from my rant please pick up something from my summary below:
Photo credit: http://www.pininterest.com
1) consent is important when going into another person’s personal space
2) Educate yourself about consent and try to practice it daily
3) no means no