A friend of mine just posted on FaceBook that he heard a Dad sharing how the Dad was afraid of his son at college being falsely accused of sexual assault. Here would be my response to that Dad or any parent expressing that fear:
Instead of worrying about your son being falsely accused, ask yourself “How have I taught my son to treat every partner with dignity and respect? What specific language did I teach him to discover what his partners want and to honor all partners boundaries (and his own boundaries and wants)?
What specific skills did I teach my son to help him to be more sexually mature and help him choose sexually mature partners? Did I teach my son that sober, enthusiastic, mutually wanted sex is the BEST for him and his partners – sex when all partners know exactly what they are doing and can fully feel everything.
How did I teach my son to intervene when he hears anyone sexually degrading someone? How did I teach my son to intervene when he sees someone using drugs or alcohol to facilitate sex with a partner?
How did I teach my son to support survivors? Did I insure my son knows that if anyone ever sexually assaults him that my son knows I will ALWAYS be here for him?
Did I tell my son that false reports are incredibly rare and that sexual assault continues to happen frequently throughout our world and across this country? Did I tell my son that I don’t want him to live in fear of something that rarely, rarely happens such as false reports. If you fear a partner could possibly be one of the super rare people who would ever false report, do not have sex with that person.
Instead of being focused on a false narrative, I’d rather you focus on having compassion for the millions of survivors of sexual assault because sadly we know that the crime of sexual assault continues to happen at an alarming rate. The reality is you are more likely to be sexually assaulted than to be falsely accused. So please honor all partners boundaries and their past experiences. Never pressure someone.
Did I emphasize to always honor ‘No’ and always give your partner a safe and supportive environment for them to say ‘No’ or ‘Yes!’ Respect the answer.
Know that regardless of your gender, identity or sexual orientation, you NEVER owe anyone sexual intimacy or sexual activity. Never. Saying ‘No’ is never mean.
Did I share with my son how spectacular sex can be when him and his partners are able to fully express themselves with their words. Asking and listening avoids confusion, reduces awkwardness, and can bring a sensational connection.
A sexual life based in dignity and respect is fun and passionate.
And if you don’t have sexual urges or do not have a sex drive, to be asexual is perfectly okay too. Honor who you are.”
If a parent teaches his son these lessons, imagine how well they will prepare their son.