What Consent Has in Common with French Fries (Yes, Really)
Consent is not a new concept. But as the #MeToo and #TimesUp movements have led to a public reckoning with sexual harassment and assault, the question of consent — what it is, what it isn’t, and how we discuss it — is being tackled from campuses to courthouses across the country.
Bumble was founded with consent in mind; safety, equality and respect are the pillars of our brand and product. This April, Sexual Assault Awareness Month, we’ve teamed up with Planned Parenthood to have a conversation about consent.
And, wouldn’t you know it, the brilliant folks at PP have come up with a way to talk about the basics of consent with friends, loved ones and potential partners that’s as simple as a drive-through order.
Consent is: Freely given, Reversible, Informed, Enthusiastic, and Specific. FRIES.
Freely given: Consenting is a choice you make without pressure, manipulation, or under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
Reversible: Anyone can change their mind about what they feel like doing, anytime. Even if you’ve done it before, and even if you’re both naked in bed.
Informed: You can only consent to something if you have the full story. For example, if someone says they’ll use a condom and then they don’t, there isn’t full consent.
Enthusiastic: When it comes to sex, you should only do stuff you WANT to do, not things that you feel you’re expected to do.
Specific: Saying yes to one thing (like going to the bedroom to make out) doesn’t mean you’ve said yes to others (like having sex).
See? Starting the conversation about consent is as easy as thinking, “I want FRIES with that.”
And remember, even if you’ve given consent, you’re allowed to say “stop” at any time. Your partner needs to respect that. If he or she doesn’t, you have the power to walk away.
Check back throughout the month for more tips on how to talk about your and your partner’s boundaries in a way that isn’t serious, scary or awkward.