“Yes” means “yes”: 5 facts about the culture of active consent in sex

“Yes” means “yes”: 5 facts about the culture of active consent in sex

Today this concept is in hearing. However, not everyone understands what consent culture is, and its main principles have not yet been rooted in Russian society. Together with experts, we will understand the features of such an approach to relationships and find out how it affects our sex life.

1. The concept of “culture of consent” originated in the late 80s of the XX century, When Western universities launched campaigns against sexual violence in campus. They began to talk about him more and more often thanks to the feminist movement, and today it is opposed to the concept of “culture of violence”, the main principle of which can be described by the phrase “who is stronger, that is right”.

Contract culture is an ethical code, at the head of which there are personal boundaries of a person. In sex, this means that one cannot decide for the other, what he or she really wants, and any interaction occurs by mutual agreement and voluntarily.

Today, the concept of consent is legally prescribed only in a number of countries (Great Britain, USA, Israel, Sweden and others), and Russia, unfortunately, is not yet among them.

2. In practice, the culture of active consent is expressed by the attitudes “yes then “yes”, “no So “no”, “wanted – ask” and “do not like – refuse”.

It is not customary to talk about sex in our society. And the installations “wanted – ask” and “do not like – refuse” just emphasize how important communication is: you need to be able to convey your feelings and desires to others. According to the sex-enlightener Tatyana Dmitrieva, the culture of active consent is designed to accustom people to the fact that an open dialogue in sex is not just important, but necessary.

“Boarded in the culture of violence, we most often have no habit of asking or the skill to refuse. You need to learn this, it is worth training. For example, come to the cinematic wolf with the intention of refusing everyone, regardless of circumstances, and thus develop the skill. To accustom to the fact that the refusal does not lead to a terrible one, but to interact, having previously asked the question, this is normal and quite erotic “.

The installation of “no” means “no” implies that refusal is nothing more than a refusal.


In historically patriarchal society, women are often afraid or hesitate to say directly what they want, and men think up for them. As a result, the female “no” or silence is often interpreted as “yes” or as a hint of the fact that you need to continue to achieve.

The “yes” installation means “yes” implies that each of the partners should clearly and clearly make it clear that he wants intimacy. Otherwise, any actions are considered violent. In addition, this attitude suggests that consent can be canceled at any moment: to change your mind in the process at all or, for example, abandon some actions.

3. Responsibility for consent lies primarily on who requests him. It is important to understand that phrases such as “I’m not sure”, “I don’t know”, “another time”, are not consent, and they should be perceived as disagreement.

“Very often the absence of a clear“ no ”does not mean“ yes ”at all. For example, due to injury, shame, fear of negative consequences, past experience of violence, imbalance of power, or simply as a result of the inability to openly communicate the partner, may not say a direct “no”, but to imply it to imply. Therefore, only absolutely steady, not in doubt, expressed by words and bodily “yes” a partner or partner can give confidence that consent took place, ”the sexologist Amina Nazaraliev comments.

“People, as a rule, are painful about refusals. They can be perceived as something that infringes itself, and therefore refusals can lead to various protective reactions, including an aggressive nature. The wording of “no” means “no” emphasizes that the refusal should be perceived exactly as it sounds. No need to look for subtexts in it or the opportunity to interpret what has been said in your favor, no matter how much this would like, ”explains the psychologist Natalya Kiselnikova.

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