Teaching Your Kids About Consent
Posted: Jul 12 2016
Teaching consent to our children begins with us. There are a variety of approaches in teaching this topic- some are better than others. For example, the traditional phrase, “no means no”, can be perceived as the only form of non-consent available, which isn’t true. So, it’s very important to understand what sort of implications can be drawn from your approach. We want to recommend a few tips for this tough subject.
- Ask For Consent
We must begin with helping our kids understand that every physical interaction with another child needs to start with consent. Whether it’s playing with another child’s toy, hugging them, etc.
Hindsight is 20/20. It’s easy to see that consent should’ve been a priority when your child takes another child’s toy and that child begins to cry. This is why teaching consent first is imperative.
- “Yes” Can Become “No”
First, the absence of a “no” does not indicate the presence of a “yes”. Second, situations become uncomfortable every day- not just sexual encounters. We all have that inner voice that speaks to us, randomly telling us that “this is not right” or “don’t take that turn”. Listen to it. Also, respect the other person’s decision to stop as well.
- Validate Their “No”
Sometimes we make the mistake of telling our kids what they’re thinking or how they’re feeling. It’s important to show your child that their “no” means something - That their words and feelings hold weight and cannot easily be dismissed. We must engrain in our children that no one can make them do anything they don’t want to do or think something that they don’t believe for themselves. Ti is imperative teach our kids HOW to think rather than what to think.