Consent Isn't Complicated

Consent Isn't Complicated, So Stop Telling People It Is

It's pretty simple actually.

Consent Isn't Complicated, So Stop Telling People It Is

I recently attended a lecture in which the speaker offered advice on relationships and dating while in college.

He also discussed adjusting to college and safe practices. Much of the night was unsurprising and straightforward until the speaker addressed consent.

Consent, according to his statement, is a complicated issue because people sometimes are not able to express themselves. In this view consent is a fuzzy, gray area where people are unsure and confused.

That is far from what consent is and what consent should be framed as.

There is nothing confusing or complicated about consent; yes means yes and no means no. Anything other than yes also means no, and the only thing that truly means yes is the word yes.

That is it. There is nothing else to it. That goes for all genders, all people who are asking for permission to do anything to and with another person.

I cringed when I heard the speaker discuss in consent in such a hazy way. How could anyone in a position of influence discuss such a topic in such a way with a group of college freshmen?

All the students in the audience will at some point or another encounter a situation in which consent will need to be clearly established. Consent is something every person has to deal with and so every person should have the same definition and understanding of the concept itself.

That is the problem with varying ideas of what exactly consent is, and how people approach it. When anyone discusses consent in terms that make it seem confusing it is easy for people to push the boundaries of what is acceptable and what is not.

The "confusion" or, in the case of the speaker, the "complication" gives people a buffer should they ever face accusations. All one must do is argue they were unable to voice their thoughts, or that their partner was unable to voice theirs, and suddenly the picture becomes unclear.

Consent needs to be approached and discussed in a simplistic, authentic way for all parties involved to be sure of their actions and any subsequent consequences.

There can be no gray area, blurred lines, or confusion when it comes to something as impactful as a person's consent.

In short, I think we all need to be on the same page when it comes to what consent is. The differing degrees to which consent is taken seriously is troubling for all of society. It is up to all of us to call out issues when we see and hear them.

For me, this article is a call-out of the idea that consent is difficult.

Consent isn't difficult. And if it is difficult for you, work on it. Make yourself better at it.

None of us can afford to be awful at consent. And none of us should encourage others (or ourselves) to take the subject lightly.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

119 People Reveal How The Pandemic Has Affected Their Love Lives, And Honestly... Relatable

"I haven't been able to get out of the 'talking phase' with anyone."

The reality is, there's no part of life the pandemic hasn't affected. Whether it's your work life, your home life, your social life, or your love life, coronavirus (COVID-19) is wreaking havoc on just about everything — not to mention people's health.

When it comes to romance, in particular, people are all handling things differently and there's no "right way" of making it through, regardless of your relationship status (single, taken, married, divorced, you name it). So, some of Swoon's creators sought out to hear from various individuals on how exactly their love lives have been affected since quarantine began.

Keep Reading... Show less

Megan Thee Stallion and Cardi B just dropped the hottest summer single yet. It's called "WAP" and we're going to get into all the intoxicating lyrics.

This song empowers females and their sexuality. These women put the ridiculous music industry female beef to bed, and I mean tucked away in a coma.

Keep Reading... Show less

How To Write Down The Holy Grail Recipe Everyone Begs You To Make

Because everyone has a signature cocktail, cake, or pasta they bring to every potluck.


From back when I used to bring my mom's classic white chocolate chip cookies to preschool on my birthday to now stirring up my signature tequila cocktails at every friends' barbecue, I've always had a couple of standby recipes in my culinary rotation.

Keep Reading... Show less

Meet My Cat: Cheshire, The Stray Turned House Cat Who Lives in Michigan

I never considered myself a cat person, but Chess immediately stole my heart.

Madelyn Darbonne

In 2016, a stray cat gave birth to a litter of three grey kittens on my aunt and uncle's property. I had never considered myself to be much of a cat person, but these furballs immediately stole my heart. I got to watch them grow up until they were old enough to leave their mother's side.

Keep Reading... Show less

How To Binge-Watch A TV Show —And Then Write A Review About It

Writing your favorite and least favorite things about a show could not be more fun.

Photo by Mollie Sivaram on Unsplash

Looking for a new show to binge? Stop scrolling through your options and listen.

Sometimes a good show doesn't come down to the genre or the actors involved, it comes down to the fact that it is simply a GOOD show. If any of these things sound appealing to you, you should definitely watch.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

11 Reasons Why Getting A Cat Is The Best Thing You Can Do For Your Mental Health

Cats may mess up your puzzles but they'll always love you unconditionally — as long as you have some catnip, that is.

Scout Guarino

Alright, everyone, it's time to stop spreading the rumor that all cats are mean, aloof, and hate everyone. Like dogs, each cat has its own personality and tendencies. Some like a lot of attention, some like less — each person has to find the right cat for them. As for me, my cats Bienfu and Reptar have seen me at my worst, but they've also helped pull me out of it. They're a constant in my life and they give me the strength to get through the day in spite of my depression, and there's even scientific evidence to support it!

Keep Reading... Show less

I've been bleaching my hair since I was in seventh grade. Yes, you read that correctly, seventh grade. That's nearly 10 years of maintaining a very light shade of blonde that too-often brings about dryness and brittle strands.

Keep Reading... Show less

Chances are if you're here, you're probably interested in writing an open letter. Yay! We're excited to have you.

Of course, not all open letters are created equal. In fact, there's a recipe to writing one for Odyssey that'll get featured on one of our many verticals. When it comes to Swoon specifically (for those new around here, that's our dating and relationships vertical), we receive dozens of open letters each month, many of which are all very similar.

Keep Reading... Show less

With a new phone comes great responsibility: Do not break it! And the best way to do that is with a case. However, picking a case can be a challenge. No need to fret, I am here to help break down some of the best cases for the new iPhone SE 2020. Honestly, I think it's going to be impossible to choose!

Keep Reading... Show less

To some who have been out of the dating world for a while, it can be hard to get back into the swing of things after being single for some time. So, I asked 26 people what they think is important to know before looking for love again, here's what they had to say.

Keep Reading... Show less
Facebook Comments