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From First Dates to Sex: Inspiring Conversations About Consent

National Sexual Assault Conference Proposal 2013


on 23 February 2015

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Transcript of From First Dates to Sex: Inspiring Conversations About Consent

Sexual Assault:
sexual activity without consent

physical force
Consent is NOT...
= yes!!!
facial expression
eye contact
body language
forced kissing
forced sexual contact
non-consensual vaginal, anal, or oral sex
unlawful sexual contact
rape (gross sexual assault)
molestation/child abuse
sex trafficking
from hand holding, to kissing, to making out, touching, oral sex, and sex...
asking for consent is healthy & normal
do you want a hug?
can I kiss you?
is this okay with you?
What’s Cindy’s problem? We had been together for about two months. We had never had sex before, but I knew we would eventually. If you want to know the truth, I was actually getting some crap from my friends about why we hadn’t done it yet. I was getting pretty impatient, and it seemed like all my friends were hooking up every weekend.

Anyway, I asked Cindy to go to this senior party with me and I was planning to make my move. When we got to the party, I gave her a couple of drinks and she got kind of buzzed. We cuddled on the sofa for a while then she said she wanted to go upstairs and lie down. She asked if I would to go with her, so I said sure. She needed a little help standing up, but nobody said anything when we went upstairs together so I figured everything was ok. I could tell Cindy was a little dizzy, but she said she was fine and smiled at me, so I thought this was my chance. One of my teammates even gave me a high five when he saw me heading into a bedroom with Cindy.

When we got to the bed, Cindy sat right down and I started to rub her back. She protested a little when I started to take off her clothes, but I knew she didn’t want to look easy. I figured she wanted to be convinced, so I just kept going. I knew I could make it happen and she’d get into it eventually. Besides, if she really didn’t want to have sex she would have let me know, wouldn’t she? Well, I ended up having sex with her even though she was a little quiet, but it was still good. Ever since, though, she has refused to talk to me. What’s her deal?

I will never forget that night as long as I live. Phil and I had been going out for a while. We had made out a bunch of times and he had always been respectful when I told him I wasn’t ready to have sex. I thought I could trust him.

Phil invited me to a party with a bunch of his senior friends. I was psyched that my parents actually let me go. I was glad Phil picked me up before the party, because I didn’t know a lot of the people there. When we got to the party it seemed like everyone was drinking, so I had a couple of drinks too. They really hit me fast. I felt dizzy and wanted to go upstairs to get away from the crowd and lie down. Phil and I had been snuggling on the couch and I didn’t feel safe to go upstairs by myself so I asked if he would like to come with me.

When we got to a bedroom I sat right down. Phil started rubbing my back and it felt good at first, but then he started to kiss my neck and take off my clothes. At first I lay down and pretended to be asleep because I thought he would stop. When he didn’t, I pushed his hands away and tried to hold my clothes on. I said “don’t”, but it was like he was ignoring me. He’d always listened before, so I kept thinking he was going to stop any minute. I kept pushing him away, but he wasn’t stopping. I couldn’t believe what was happening; he wasn’t listening to me or paying attention to anything I was telling him.

It was like a nightmare-- I was so scared I froze; I couldn’t scream or do anything. He forced me to have sex with him. I thought he was different. How could this happen?

sexual violence
healthy relationships

If the person initiating is getting mixed signals, just slow down... consent is needed.
abuse of POWER
Party Plan
or Friend Plan
Lessons from Hitch...
what does it take to maintain a healthy relationship?
Recently at school some students have been getting in trouble for PDA’s (public displays of affection). Emily and Sam usually kiss each other hello before classes in the mornings, but Emily doesn’t want to get in trouble. She’s nervous to talk to Sam about it because she doesn’t want him to think that she doesn’t want to kiss him.

Later that day, she decides to talk to him about it and asks if they can stop kissing at school for a while. After she explains why she doesn’t want to, Sam agrees and they both feel good about the decision. Emily was relieved. Sam felt great too because he knew she still liked him.
A few weeks later, Sam found out that Emily had told her friends about the first time they went further than kissing. Right after he found out he told Emily that it made him feel weird she was describing tons of details to a bunch of her girlfriends.

Emily said she was glad he brought it up and that she was sorry; she didn’t know he felt that way. She said from now on she can keep things more private. She asked if she could still tell her one best friend about details. He said that was okay; just not everyone. They both agreed and Sam felt better. Emily was glad he was able to talk about it with her.
Utilize new tools and language to facilitate discussions on consent as a model for preventing sexual assault

Learn ways to engage students in the classroom by using popular culture, interactive story-telling and scenarios

Develop a framework for bystander intervention to prevent sexual violence and promote a victim-centered culture
"Primary prevention is about changing our social and cultural norms in order to create a safer, healthier world for all of us."
Sam and I had so much fun at the party this weekend. I was excited to go with him and I knew my friend Cindy was coming with her boyfriend, Sam’s friend, Phil.

They arrived after we did and I said hi to her and we talked for a while. I noticed she looked kind of out of it. She’s not used to drinking and she said she didn’t eat much that day so the alcohol probably hit her fast. Later I saw her and Phil go upstairs together. She looked kind of drunk to me but, I figured she just needed to lie down and Phil would get her water—I didn’t think much of it at the time.

But now…Cindy told me that Phil forced her to have sex with him at the party when they were upstairs. Everyone is talking about it. They are calling her a liar and a slut. It’s terrible. They’re saying it’s all her fault. What can I do? Cindy had already told me last week that she wasn’t ready to have sex with him yet. I should have done something. How can I help her?
Emily and I went to my friend’s party this weekend. We had a great time, but my teammate just told me the news. I guess Phil took it a little too far with his girl Cindy that night. It sounds like he definitely didn’t ask if she wanted to and had sex with her anyway.

I guess I did notice that Cindy was a little buzzed at the party, but I just thought she was just having fun. Should I have done something? Maybe I should have offered her a ride home with us? I’ve known Phil for a while, why didn’t he help her? He’s a good guy. I know some of our friends were giving him crap for not having had sex with her yet, but they were just joking, right? Should I have said something?

He already told a bunch of the guys at school that he finally scored, and now she’s not talking to him. Phil doesn’t get it. He thinks she’s just being weird or something. He should have listened to her if she wasn’t ready to have sex. I always listen to Emily when she wants to stop...
LISTEN to your gut
Get Sam to HELP OUT
FOLLOW THROUGH on your party plan
SQUASH the rumors
Offer options for HELP
Listen & BELIEVE
TALK to Phil,
Take the pressure OFF him
TELL his buddies to knock it off
Model HEALTHY relationship behaviors
Make a PLAN for the party
LISTEN to your GUT
Tell Phil: "Tonight's not the night..."
DISTRACT Phil with X-Box or Pizza...
DOUBLE TEAM Phil & Cindy with Emily's help
QUESTION his story
MODEL healthy relationship behaviors
SQUASH the locker room talk
takes the focus off the victim and perpetrator and places it on the community

asks everyone to participate in a behavior change before crimes happen

aims to change cultural norms and values (school climate)

requires a system-wide response that is victim/student centered

addresses the why: (power imbalances, aggressive behaviors and language, etc.)
People get sick; public health seeks to determine why, and what behavior can change this outcome.
(Public Health)
It turns out germs are the ‘why.’ So do we ask that only people with colds change their behavior? No. The public health model looks for solutions that everyone can implement to stop the spread of germs: washing your hands, sneezing into your arm, staying home when sick, etc.
It takes a cohesive community and a lot of teamwork. Everyone is expected to do their part.
Consent, Communication, Role of the Bystander
the conversation:
Full transcript