It’s quarantine and we’re all stuck at home. Boredom motivates us to go on a quest for things that will keep us entertained. Movies, shows, books, cooking, cleaning and obviously dating apps. Online dating is the best way to pass time during this ongoing pandemic, because you have someone to flirt with and sext with (if you’re single). Flirting and sexting is absolutely fun, only when both the parties involved are comfortable. A little bit of teasing, laughter and orgasms never hurt anyone. But is consent required while sexting too? Does consent really matter when it comes to just virtual fun?
YES, it does. No one wants unsolicited dick pics to randomly pop up mid conversation, and immediately perish the mood in mere seconds.
The non-consensual texting:
The non-consensual sext is exactly the same as the person who randomly gropes you in public, because you slept with them before. This person concludes that since you willingly indulged with them in the act once or twice, you basically belong to them now; whenever they feel like it. This is categorised as sexual assault in real life. But what if it happens online?
Probably most men find it flattering to shoot off photos of their junk as some sort of “look what thinking of you did to me” moment. They fail to understand or foresee how that image might be received on the other end. They don’t do it to make you cringe in discomfort. Their intention is for you to be ready to receive such unseemly images at any time of the day; irrespective of how frequent they are.
Don’t you think, at the bare minimum, sending someone images of your private parts without their permission is downright disrespectful? Most people, especially women don’t find dick pics that are uncalled for as sexy or turning on. They find it disgusting, impolite and cheap even.
It’s a form of digital harassment:
When such photos fly in from complete strangers–it’s a kind of digital sexual harassment. Why? It’s because non-consensual sexting reveals a hidden fundamental disrespect for women and people. It shows that you fail to acknowledge the receiver’s feelings, thoughts, emotions and daily schedules are not always in sync with your arousal routines and timetables.
It also turns them into phone cradling blow-up dolls. And assumes that one’s sole existence is to please you, when and how you want. A person technically cannot give ‘consent’ if the image has already been delivered.
This is how you give and take consent:
Engage in a kind of introductory conversation. The motive behind it – might be very transparent. But it isn’t only preferable but the respectful thing to do. Absence of this means sexting without foreplay. Men should think twice about it as a warning trigger before they pull anything out. There are fewer women who send out their unsolicited lady parts pictures; but they should also be considerate as well, while hovering on the “send” button.
Like everything connected to sexy times, communication is the king in sexting as well. It’s definitely possible that the two of you are into surprise sexting; but it’s better to always talk about it first.
Always talk about it:
There is a huge difference between sending a thing to someone which they might look at later for enjoyment, and just sending an equivalent of poking them with your erection.
Shooting off flirty texts or some suggestive pictures is totally different from directly jumping into the explicit dirty talk sessions.
That being said, one can’t entirely blame a person for thinking the other person is interested in sexting them again; especially if they’ve indulged in it before.
There is also a high chance that your partner has no clue that they’re involving in non-consensual sexting. When it comes to men, there is a societal pressure for them to always make the first move. And women who make the first move are deemed as sluts or shameless by the society. But moving this to digital platforms is definitely a recipe of disaster.
Making your sexting partner understand that sexual relationships of any sort, irrespective of which platform, needs consent is more than fair.
I’m sure most of you who are reading this have received unsolicited dick pics at some point. Now, don’t conclude it as your fault. You gave them permission to dirty talk through your flirting. It does not by default imply that the other person can shoot off their private part images without asking you first. Just make sure you let the person know your boundaries and comfort zones, for whenever you decide to get back into the game next.