One of the most important things you can do is ask for, and ensure you have, your partner’s consent. The word consent means to ‘agree’ or ‘give permission’.
Consent is an agreement between all participants. It must be mutual, voluntary, informed, and ongoing.
Consent must be
Mutual: everyone involved has to agree.
Informed: everyone involved needs to know what they are consenting to.
Continuous: your partner can change their mind at any time.
For every act: just because your partner said yes to one sexual act doesn’t mean they have consented to every sexual act.
Silence is not consent, and the absence of “no” is not consent. Any unwanted, non-consensual, sexual contact is sexual assault. There are a range of behaviors and actions that fall under the definition of sexual assault. Sexual assault is not only unwanted penetration (rape), it is also any unwanted sexual contact such as touching, kissing or grabbing.