This Metaphor for Consent Might Be Just the Thing You Need to Make It Click

Trying to decide what is creepiest about this comic is a bit difficult. The presumptuousness of humans needing help to understand how not to rape (that’s what I get from someone’s attempt to explain consent to me), the otherworldly ideas or the way the text is formulated.

It is evocative of a parody as it seems so derisory, infantilising and exaggerated all throughout you’d think its purpose was to generate an awkward laugh. Unfortunately, it seems this person just might be serious.

Gear up to build the Consent Castle! It’s an awesome metaphor for how to establish consent before and during intimacy – and how to change the negotiation terms as you build a relationship.

We hope this can give you and the people you share it with a solid foundation for fun, healthy, and mutually satisfying intimate relationships.

I was managing just fine until present day, thank you, like most people who are not psychos or severely mentally impaired as to not automatically discern when consent is present or not.

My partner and I give workshops on consent. We talk a lot about consent activities – things to think about and things you can talk about to establish consent before and during intimacy.

Again, our species seemed to be managing just fine without tutorials. There’s something called a brain which provides us with enough skills to decode the signals received from others; humans generally don’t need an instructions manual.

Then comes a list of boxes to tick:

  • Talking
  • Texts
  • E-mails
  • Checking in before
  • Checking in during
  • Checking in after
  • Touch
  • Body language
  • Sharing fantasies
  • Setting boundaries and limits
  • Safe words
  • Power dynamics
  • Drug and alcohol use
  • Emotional and mental state
  • Triggers

Obviously, it reads like a list of steps to complete a project, mechanically and meticulously. Which is the opposite of passion and spur-of the-moment decisions, often involved when two people become intimate. It might come in handy to non-humans wanting to live on Earth in disguise, after doing some studying. But not much else.

Social justice warriors don’t seem to get the difference between intimacy, largely based on instincts and intuition, and bureaucracy, which is all about ticking boxes on a piece of paper.This behaviour is highly unnatural. If anything, this objectifies others, as opposed to the natural way people behave.

Consent isn’t a checkbox. And it isn’t just a legal entity.

That’s funny enough after listing all mandatory aspects to be discussed.

You’ve met someone awesome and you decide to build a castle together/ plan some sexy times. You’ll probably talk about what you want and what you don’t want.

This is followed by a parallel between the so-called castle building and organising the “play date” – I choose this specific language as the whole thing, although addressing people who are over 18, infantilises them to the point of insult. There is no need to make such allegories when approaching an adult theme.

And, the author should have considered the implications of “probably” when listing imagined conversations which are off this planet in most cases, between people who have recently met and are trying to get to know each other (and are of course represented in the images as genderless so one can’t really tell what’s going on there).

    “I’d really love to give you a blow job.”

“I’m not really into getting oral, but I love giving it.”

I’m not sure what happens where the creator of this wonderful comic lives, but in a lot of places that would not be a starting conversation between people who barely know each other. Unless a lot of alcohol consumption was involved. And I mean a lot. And for most people, not even then. These things are rarely discussed in such a blunt manner but rather happen as matters evolve. Having this sort of conversation, especially in a public place, where strangers generally meet, would be very inappropriate, to say the least. I would not recommend trying to “earn” someone’s consent by outright offering them oral. However, this is not the creepiest suggestion by far.

      You might even draw up some diagrams…

“So, I was thinking about…”

“Ooooh! That looks neat!”

The text is on an image of an individual holding a piece of paper where they’d drawn what the act would look like, showing it to the other person, with arrows pointing to certain body parts.

Who does that? Who the hell does that? 

That’s like drawing a sketch of building a machine, indicating where every part should go.

It’s even weirder than showing someone porn or the Kama Sutra and asking them to imitate what they see. Actually giving someone personalised, illustrated instructions of what to do with you?

      And it’s a good idea to check in to see how it’s going.

“How does this feel? Is this okay?”

I don’t know why, as the questions are innocuous in and of themselves, I get a strange vibe when reading that correlated with consent. It indicates a certain power dynamic and is a bit suggestive of manipulation – perhaps an older person trying to talk a much younger person through a sex act they’d never experienced. It’s the whole idea of “checking in” to make sure one isn’t doing anything the other might perceive as wrong (maybe because it is wrong?), and is calculatedly asking questions to feel safe in that sense. Maybe I’m exaggerating but that’s the feeling I get.

        The point is, when you’re building something with someone, you           usually start out by being really careful.

Like offering them oral when you hardly know them.

The great thing about consent castles is that they are always works in progress. You may need to do some maintenance.

“I’ve been feeling really self-conscious about my body during sex lately.”

“OK. Can I help with those feelings?”

“I think… I think I’d like to try using a strap-on with you.”

“That might be fun! What does that look like for you?”

I’ll tell you what it looks like to me.

The article is clearly not written for heterosexuals, though apparently it addresses everyone, and seeks to convince that this is the way most people actually behave. The person wanting to use that type of thing is clearly not male, and heterosexual men (who are the majority by the way) generally do not enjoy being fucked up the ass with a toy by their girlfriends or wives.

In fact, on the website this is published on, it’s very difficult to find an author who is not part of a minority based on “gender” or sexual orientation. And yet they claim to understand the psyche of the average individual and proselytise about how things should be in everyone else’s lives. They clearly have little understanding of that.

After a quick reinforcement of why negotiating sex with someone is always necessary and positive, the finale is an image of a construction worker in lingerie holding yet another sketch of two people and some instructions on what to do.

“So gear up! Because this is going to be a lot of fun!”

Fucking creepy.

Utterly creepy.

This is what “education” is coming down to nowadays.