How men can help make sexual consent clear

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By giving up dibs on making the first move, guys can completely eliminate the risk inherent in the reading and misreading of interpersonal signals.

The most reliable way to help manifest sexual consent is to curb your enthusiasm till it emerges from the other party. | Pixabay

 

You know how some people begin their expositions with “So, I have this friend…”

So, I have this friend who is a bit weird. He wrote me this long note

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Let the girl make the first move

As a single 40-year-old who has been dating for the last five years, I have always been made fun of for waiting for the girl to make the first move.

“So you’d rather watch this stupid movie instead of making out with me?”

“You CAN hold my hand if you want, you know.”

At a recent party, when I explained to friends that it just makes consent a lot more forthcoming and clear than any signal would, they conceded that it was a good practice given the times we live in.

It’s always been this way for me. Maybe because I didn’t kiss anyone till I was 29 or sleep with anyone till I was 35. (No, I’m not ashamed of it and let’s just stop shaming virgins.) Yes, I am aware that many girls may have wanted me to make the move because it’s supposed to be a guy’s job. But I just can’t get myself to do it. The few instances I have tried to peck a girl on her cheeks or hold her hand, I would stop halfway. I just don’t have those skills.

At 22, I asked a girl if I could kiss her and she said: “You could have if you hadn’t asked. The moment has passed.” The next day, her girl best friend kissed her in front of me just to demonstrate how it’s done. At 27, I got a crick in my neck trying to kiss a girl who was in the driver’s seat when she parked outside Police staff quarters (of all the places in Chennai) to make out. Some of us are just wired this way. We are not weird.

I just want to say it’s okay to be wired this way. It’s okay to be asexual or platonic with a girl you are attracted to. Even if you are spending nights together watching movies, chatting or just happy cuddling and not taking it to “the next level”. It doesn’t make you any less of a man. You don’t have to sleep with every girl who wants to spend a night with you. She won’t judge you or your masculinity for not trying to have sex with her.

If a girl wants you, she sure knows how to get you. You don’t ever have to put yourself or her in an awkward situation by trying to read signals. If a girl really won’t make the first move, she will tell you to do so, expressly. Take it from someone who has been doing this for five years. You are not missing out on anything. I have had some great sex over the last five years and know that you can’t have that physical connection with every person. Every person brings a different energy and it’s never binary. Anyone who told you that you are either good or bad at sex does not know it takes two to tango.

I do like having sex and want to like it. Which is why I don’t sleep with every girl who comes home to spend the night. And I’m sure every girl who comes home to spend the night hasn’t always decided if she wants to have sex or not.

And that’s why I’m single? Nope.

I’m single because I haven’t felt as strongly as I once did.

I hope to.

***

So, dear shrink, tell me…

Is my friend weird or is that good advice?

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