Understanding and Preventing Sexual Coercion
Sexual coercion is an illegal act that can lead to physical and psychological harm. It is important for people to be able to identify and avoid situations in which they are in danger of being subjected to sexual coercion. Below are key tips for understanding and preventing sexual coercion.
Recognize Signs of Sexual Coercion
- Pressure for a sexual contact of any kind, either in the form of verbal commands or physical force.
- Uttering words, such as “You owe me” or “It’ll be different this time.”
- No verbal acknowledgement of consent of any kind.
- Attempts to isolate the other person or impede their ability to leave a dangerous situation.
- Continuing to pursue someone despite the absence of a yes. This includes verbal requests, physical prodding, and attempts to control access to available exits.
Avoid Sexual Coercion
It is important for people to be aware of their rights regarding sexual consent and take steps to protect themselves in such situations. Here are a few key tips for preventing sexual coercion:
- Verbal consent. Make sure that both parties clearly agree to any sexual contact in verbal form before engaging. No person may assume that the other party has given consent without a clear verbal “yes”.
- Set boundaries. Make sure to establish clear boundaries for any sexual or romantic contact, and be sure to respect them. If any negative feelings arise, respect that person’s boundaries and end the situation.
- Call for help. If someone is subjecting you to sexual coercion, don’t hesitate to call for help. This can be done through calling a friend, a trusted family member, or contacting law enforcement if you feel it is necessary.
- Stay safe. Make sure to always keep your safety in mind and be aware of the potential risks before engaging in any form of sexual contact. Be wary of any situation that makes you feel uncomfortable or unsafe.
Sexual coercion is an illegal act that can lead to serious physical and psychological harm. It is important for people to be able to recognize the signs of sexual coercion and take steps to protect themselves from such situations. By being aware of one’s rights and enforcing boundary-setting strategies, individuals can avoid being subjected to sexual coercion.