Hell-Bent on Consent

If you haven’t seen Frozen by now, there really is no help for you. Especially since it’s enjoyed such wonderful conversation surrounding it’s female-power message.

My body is ready.

My body is ready.

The more I watch it (the tally is now at an embarrassing number), the more I love the final scene.


Kristoff and Anna’s first kiss is glorious for a number of reasons – they have been through so much together, they obviously care about each other, and they are both super attractive people with Bambi eyes. But I came to realize that part of why I love that moment so much is what Kristoff says:

“I could kiss you! I could. I mean, I’d like to. I – may I? We me? I mean – may we?”

Boom. Success.

Boom. Success.

He actually asks her permission to kiss her! What a revelation! What a breath of fresh air in an age when consent has become the anti-orgasm, for some reason.

We often embrace fantasies that omit the aspect of consent in favor of scenarios where one party just takes what they want, regardless of the protests or silence of the other person. It seems “weird” and “dorky” to ask someone to kiss them – after all, shouldn’t you just be able to read their body language? What kind of rube are you that you can’t tell if a girl wants to bone or not? If a woman is folding her arms and turning her face away from you, she clearly doesn’t want a kiss as much as a woman whose lips are puckering, right?

Well, no. That’s the whole problem. While body language can always help, people can’t control every little tic their body makes. Especially when we are put in a new or strange situation, the body is not a dependable mode of communication. Only the words that come out of our mouths can say what we truly mean to say. That’s why Anna’s response: “We may!” is so liberating and – dare I say it? – sexy! Kristoff’s offer of a kiss is awkward and uncertain, but the fact that he is asking Anna for her permission allows her a second to imagine the kiss before it happens. There is a split second of fantasy, which makes the reality even more anticipated and erotic.

I'm going to get some weird stats involving the search terms "erotic" and "Disney."

I’m gonna get some weird stats involving the search terms “erotic” and “Disney.”

The “consent is sexy” movement has been gaining glorious ground with awesome moments like these. Of course, for every movie scene like this, there are a million in which the guy grabs the girl’s face and yanks her toward him because it’s “sexy when the guy takes control.” (And, in Disney’s dark past, there are the kisses that happen WHILE THE WOMAN IS ACTUALLY UNCONSCIOUS.) There’s nothing wrong or inherently anti-feminist about wanting to be controlled, but it must be made clear where the lines are drawn. If something is not working for you, speak up and say “stop.” If something sounds like a great idea, say “Yes!”

Additionally, it is easy as women to think that we are always the victim, never the victimizer, but consent is a good practice for people of all genders and sexes. If someone hasn’t explicitly said that they want to do whatever it is you want to do, ask them! Be open about what you want so that they can be open with you.

Sex does not have to be about power struggle. Sometimes, the sexiest situation can be when both people have equal power and balance each other out, like yin and yang. Consent makes it easier to divide up that power so that each party can enjoy some of it, and so that everyone stays safe during sexy times.


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