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Why It Matters

The experience of consenting to unwanted sex is traumatic. It leaves women feeling degraded and devalued, and chips away at their self-worth, empowerment, feeling of safety, and sense of equality.  Because unwanted consent is an unacknowledged issue, women silently blame themselves instead of understanding how they have been impacted by the wider social and political environment. Self-blame and trauma undermine a woman's well-being and can contribute to mental health issues. 7

Image by eberhard grossgasteiger
Consenting to unwanted sex can have life-long negative consequences
Consensual does not mean harmless 


Women who consent to unwanted sex can experience:

  • Depression

  • Anxiety

  • Self Blame

  • Low Self Esteem

  • Anger 

  • Substance Abuse 

  • PTSD

  • Chronic Sexual Problems 

  • Lack of Sexual Desire 



Because consenting to unwanted sex is not commonly discussed, these symptoms may often be blamed on something else. Women can spend their lives struggling with psychological distress and never understand the root cause of their issues. Therapists often can’t help because, although the negative impact of consenting to unwanted sex has been documented, it is not considered in any therapeutic protocols.

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