What Does 'Proper Consent' Mean?
Health and Wellness

What Does 'Proper Consent' Mean?

Let's end the "one in five women" statistic.

44
Zoë Hernandez

After the ruling in the Brock Turner sexual assault case, in the past week, sexual assault and consent are two major topics of conversations in person and on the Internet. People from all around the world, including Vice President Joe Biden, are sharing their feelings and opinions about the case and Turner's sentence.

As a nation and a society, we have made leaps and bounds in awareness of rape culture and recognizing the need to truly punish those who commit acts of sexual assault. However, college campuses clearly still need to improve and implement programs about sexual assault and consent. The statistic that one in five women on a college campus will be raped should shock the nation, but it is not until cases like these where we see the validity of it.

Rollins does a great job to provide students with many opportunities to educate themselves through programs and presentations. First semester, all of the Greek organizations at Rollins were required to attend a program about being safe with alcohol for yourself and your friends. As a woman on a college campus, I know the previous statistic exists, and I know I need to be an active bystander and not a passive one. That means, as a bystander, I step up and help instead of standing there with the hope that someone else will come to the person's rescue.

In my freshmen year, I was aware of the statistic from above, but I did not expect to ever have to intervene in a situation. That changed at one club night for Rollins students when I witnessed how misunderstood the concept of consent can be. One of my friends was dancing with a guy and I thought she was having fun jamming to the DJ and being surrounded by friends. At least she looked like she was until she attempted to walk towards me and then fell on top of me. I thought she just wanted to come over and see how I was doing and dance with her friends. It was then I noticed she was pretty intoxicated, and after I managed to stand her up, she told me the guy she had been dancing with was trying to do something that she did not like.

I knew she could not give proper consent, but apparently the guy she was dancing with did not understand. Shortly after that, the guy made his way over to us and they started to dance again. I kept my eye on him and soon noticed he kept trying to put his hand down her pants and my friend was pushing his hand away. As I realized what was happening, my adrenaline started pumping and I knew I had to act quickly. I grabbed her arms, counted to three, and turned us around so that I was now in front of him and my friend was standing in a circle with our friends.

He then said to me, "Oh, c'mon, we were just having fun!" and I seriously could have punched him right then and there, but instead I said, "No means no a**hole." Then I turned around, walked my friend to the door, gathered the friends we had come to the club with and went home.

After that experience, I knew something was really wrong with the concept of consent. Even though my friend was not saying, "No," out loud, her pushing his hand away clearly showed she did not want him to do that. Consent is a hard subject because most people think, "No means no," but what happens when the person cannot give proper consent? There is a grey area that needs to explained, and more education on consent needs to happen.

I stumbled across this British video about consent that was released by the Thames Valley Police in 2015. Even I have had trouble with figuring out the concept of consent, but this video makes it a whole lot easier to understand.

As the Brock Tuner case became viral, I have not been able to stop thinking about this night at the club with my friends. Because there many more girls out there with the same experience, except maybe a friend wasn't there to help.

We need to teach our future generations what consent means and to only accept proper consent. That means, if someone is drunk, high or their judgment is otherwise compromised, or if someone unconscious, then proper consent cannot be given.

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

I Started Dating A Guy Before Quarantine, But Now We Rarely Speak Unless I Double-Text

"He's really nice and cute and I like being around him when we see each other, but he's awful at communication."

Each week Swoonie B will give her advice on anonymous topics submitted by readers. Want to Ask Swoonie B something related to dating and relationships? Fill out this form here — it's anonymous.

Keep Reading... Show less
Lifestyle

This Is Exactly What You Should Eat Today In Quarantine, Based On Your Zodiac Sign

You've probably been eating it the past three months,

If we added up all the minutes of my life I've stood in front of the fridge or pantry mindlessly glazing over options, it would probably amount to several years longer than I'd care to admit.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

If You Don't Think People Are Legitimately Scared To Stay In Lockdown, Think Again

People are terrified of what could happen if states stay in lockdown too long.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) continues to be the topic of discussion for most U.S. residents. From federal reopening guidelines to individual state timelines, the country is all over the place. This sparks conversations within the news, social media, and in family homes about the consequences of reopening the country incorrectly.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

If You Don't Think People Are Legitimately Scared To Reopen States, You're Not Looking Hard Enough

People are terrified of what could happen if states begin reopening too early.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) continues to be the topic of discussion for most U.S. residents. From federal reopening guidelines to individual state timelines, the country is all over the place. This sparks conversations within the news, social media, and in family homes about the consequences of reopening the country incorrectly.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

Feel A Lil' Better: Because You Need To Stretch It Out

Your weekly wellness boost from Odyssey.

No matter how good (or bad) you'd describe your health, one thing is for sure: a little boost is ALWAYS a good idea. Whether that's reading a new, motivating book, or listening to a song that speaks to your soul, there are plenty of resources to help your health thrive on any given day.

Flexibility is an important part of life. Yes, you need to be able to go with the flow and adjust when needed, but literal, physical flexibility is equally handy. Not only does increased flexibility keep you safe from injury each time you work out, but a good stretch session is incredibly soothing after a long day. Your body goes through a lot! It needs to cool down and get loose after all the activities you put it through.

Keep Reading... Show less
Lifestyle

5 Amazing Things That Happened To Me When I Took Just A Week Off From Social Media

I've taken one-week off social media, and here's what I learned.


You’ll think clearer.

Keep Reading... Show less
Facebook Comments