I was doing some research this past week, and I came across something interesting. Consent and Body Language. How do these two connect and do they?
The answer is a resounding YES. Consent and body language go hand in hand. And this is why. In intimate situations a lot of the communication is nonverbal. And some of these nonverbal cues can be smiling, nodding, etc. When you go on a first date with someone, your attempting to read body language to see if that person is “interested” in you, or wants that good night kiss, or is ok with you putting your arm around them.
Body language can be extremely misguiding, because the way one person perceives it, can be completely different then the way it was meant to be sent.
So think of it this way, your at the movies on a first date, and your thinking to yourself, do I make the first move. Do I put my arm around them, do I touch their leg? Oh, maybe the way they are looking at me now, makes it seems ok? But is it?
There are a lot of nerves that fly around on a first date too, so that can definitely misconstrue body language.
Let’s take all of that guessing out and just flat out ASK the question. Can I put my arm around you? Is it ok if I put my hand on your leg? And so forth. It may seem uncomfortable at first but you know what, your relationship will be built on open communication and trust.
Another interesting thought came from an article that I read this past week. Mtv did a survey on young men to see if the #MeToo campaign changed their behaviors and according to the study, it in fact did.
“According to the results, nearly 1 in 3 young men were concerned that something they had done in the past could be considered sexual harassment. Forty percent of the young men admitted that #MeToo had changed the way they act in potential romantic relationships. And 1 in 4 of the young people surveyed said they’ve noticed guys around them change their behavior since the #MeToo movement began.”
This just goes to show that #MeToo has pushed some major boundaries and it is beginning to shed a lot of light on something that used to be so dark.
So to conclude, both of these go hand in hand. It seems that young men are looking at their own behavior, and I am sure some women have as well. While taking the thought of the way that we handle relationships and making them open and honest and communicating appropriately, we can build a world where sexual and domestic violence and sexual harassment are a thing of the past.
To read the full article on the study that Mtv conducted go here.