Consent is an ambiguous word
Consent is more than stopping when no is said.
It’s more like saying yes with words, not just your body
It is being a willing participant
But it’s the “not giving consent” part we don’t really acknowledge
Not giving consent can look like more than just
Yelled objections and bruises from altercations left on girl’s skin and consequently shades of black and blues decorating their skin for long after the surface wounds have faded.
Not these guidelines are too black and white
Not giving consent can also look like
Laying strewn across the bed of a boy that you thought cared about you
His body pressing against you after a montage of come on’s have led to the fire of him, burning down the beams of your body
Your mind giving in on itself
In till all you could utter was fine.
Not giving consent looks more like glossing over the terms and conditions because who reads them anyway
My only words were condom because your touch was something that I never checked accept and you never were bothered with my safety anyway
And Jesus Christ! You were three years my senior
And I was naïve in the way that I dictated my body
because you were the first person to whisper sweet nothings into my soul.
Your compliments masquerading the predator inside of you
And I was so blinded that I signed my name on the dotted line without reading the fine print
And I should have recognized the writing on the wall etching out the meticulous way that you waited in till I reached the age of sweet sixteen
Because it made the your one way ticket to damnation null and void
But I was too busy feeling the scars others left on your skin to notice the ones you left on me
And it didn’t take the first encounter to send me running nor the second
Because you had me so convinced with the s*** that you spewed that it took me researching this poem to realize the truth of what had occurred months ago
When you mistook kisses for a green light
When there was only a stop sign in its place
I can only imagine you were bad at standardized test because you ignored the wait till instructed notion at the bottom of my throat
And maybe you should realize that if you have to convince someone to have sex with you or forcibly take the action upon yourself that you shouldn’t have sex.
You are the reason that I believe that boys should be taught how not to rape.
And you wouldn’t imagine the surprise I had when I realized this because I believed the apologies that you had made months before when I confronted you on crossing the lines I had drawn in the dirt
And I swallowed the lies of confounding variables because you had just made a mistake
And yet even as I say these words I find them hard to say because my heart ached when I wished you away from my life
And despite all the times you trespassed against my skin I welcomed you back again and again.
And social media makes it easy for me to torture myself because I look at you page like it’s the morning paper
And I know that I’ll be over you when this regimen ends
But I’m searching between time stamps to find the person I thought you were but it seems that I lost you somewhere between I think I found the one and my last girlfriend was a whore.
And while you can dust your hands free of the crimes you committed upon me.
I am left picking at skin that doesn’t feel like mine anymore leaving scars to cover up the marks you left behind
Labored breaths of sister anxiety creeping down my neck
Wishing for the days that the white elephant in the room was our biggest problem.