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Parenting

Mom teaches son consent through non-verbal body language cues in brilliant video

She uses hugs to show enthusiastic consent and body language that says no.

consent; body language; parenting; motherhood; teaching consent

Mom uses body language to teach son about consent

Fostering an environment where consent is expected and respected can be difficult if you don't quite know how to make it work. Consent has been a big conversation in society since the "Me Too" movement where people shared their stories of sexual assault or sexual violence. A theme began developing around consent and it became clear that not everyone understood what consent and non-consent looks like in a hormone-fueled moment.

This has led to parents trying to figure out the best ways to teach their children about verbal consent and enthusiastic consent. But there's one area that sometimes gets overlooked and one mom is taking to social media to show how she teachers her sons to recognize non-verbal body language that can mean consent and non-consent.

Kelsey Pomeroy, a mom of two boys, recently shared a video showing how she is teaching her children to not only listen for verbal consent but to look for signs of physical consent as well.


In the video she's standing in the kitchen and the text overlay reads, "I am a mom of 2 boys and we play the body language game to teach consent." It starts off by her telling her young son that she's not going to be speaking during the game but he has to figure out from her body language if she is saying yes or no. Her son immediately understood when it was okay to hug and not okay.

"We talk about how even if someone isn't saying 'no' with their words, they might be saying 'no', 'I don't like this', or 'I'm uncomfortable' with their body language. That means we stop," Pomeroy writes in the caption.

The mom of two says that they also reverse the roles so her sons get practice saying "no" with their words and their body. There are also conversations about standing up for others and reading body language in other situations, and parents are applauding her lessons.

"As the mom of 2 girls, I cried watching this, thinking of the future respectful men my girls will get to interact with because of awesome moms like you. Thank you," one woman writes.

"As a mom of a 2 yr old boy who LOVES to give hugs to other little girls, this is so freaking smart!!! I've defaulted so many times with trying to tell the little girl to tell him no, and I'm totally perpetuating patriarchal Norms by doing that. What a great exercise to do with your little one (especially little boys). Thank you so much for sharing this," another mom praises.

"I don't have kids, but I work with them! I love that you're able to teach this with your son and I really wish more parents would teach their kids this!! Especially teaching him body language cues, since not everyone is ABLE to speak with their words," someone else says.

Clearly this message is much appreciated by other parents who are now taking notes on how to play the body language game with their own children. Teaching consent doesn't have to be hard and it's always worth it.

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