Why Consent Matters


ConsentFeminist Wednesday is so excited to be partnering with Women in Leadership Uganda’s Teen Voices Programme, which encourages teens to write their stories. Stay tuned for more!

As a warning, this piece deals with sexual assault. Please take care of yourself if you’re especially sensitive to the topic. <3

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Consent means saying yes to something, and both people must give consent in romantic situations.

Joan* is an 18-year-old girl who studies at Townside High School, Busembatia, in Senior Four.

It was a Sunday morning and there was a leavers party for Senior Fours, and Joan was enjoying herself. Jacob, her classmate, approached her while she was dancing. He asked Joan to dance with him, and she accepted, so they danced together.

As they were dancing, Jacob asked her out for a dinner date, and because he was kind and handsome, Joan accepted. So, she got well-dressed that night and they both went out to dinner. As time passed, these two had a very serious relationship, and Joan loved Jacob more than anything on earth, she always wanted to do whatever Jacob asked of her. She was some time impressed with what she was doing for her boyfriend, and she liked doing good things for him, as this was the way it done by those in real love.

Jacob being a boyfriend and kind to Joan was not all true, because he would go to his friends and tell them that she was a waste of time to him. This was something Joan did not know, until she was told by one of her friends that Jacob was not serious with her as she always thought. Her friend, Ruth, told her to keep away from Jacob, something that Joan did not like.

One day, Jacob decided to try to have sex with Joan. They both accepted, until the moment they reached the meeting point, when Joan decided she disliked how was Jacob was being and what other people were telling her about Jacob. Joan changed her mind, and decided that she was not ready for sex, so she told Jacob to stop, but Jacob told her he didn’t want to stop. So Joan let him go ahead with the sexual issue. But she hated Jacob for what he had done, for forcing her to go through with sex when she decided she didn’t want to, so she walked away from him.

*Names have been changed