A new year is often seen as a new beginning; a time to leave the past behind and charge head first into the future.
Many people make resolutions to lose weight, go to the gym, or give something up for the New Year. Bettering oneself is always a great idea. What about taking a look at our relationships and sexual communication?
A GREAT resolution would be to focus on respect and consent in relationships. Consent and respect are important parts of a relationship. When you respect your partner, you show that you really care for them. You show them that you are taking their needs and desires into consideration rather than just focusing on what you want. They will feel more loved, appreciated, and cared for, and they in turn will begin to respect you!
When you begin to focus on consent in a relationship, you are taking respect to the next level. By asking for consent, you show your partner that you are in tune with what THEY want.
For example: when people kiss their partners, how often do they ask first? How often do people get kissed who really don’t want to be kissed at that moment (whether during a hook-up or after 20 years in the relationship)?
Asking a partner for a kiss is wonderful for many reasons. If they say “yes,” you know your partner wants to kiss you! If they say “no” then you don’t make your partner feel uncomfortable and you respect your partner’s boundaries. If you are taking their wants and desires into consideration, they are more likely to feel comfortable sharing with you about their wants, desires, and boundaries going forward.
This new year, resolve to make respect and consent a priority. Show your partner (and/or potential partners) that they are important and that you care about them.
Happy New Year!