Love Doesn’t Always Mean Yes

When you’re in a relationship, there are sometimes certain expectations. But being in a relationship doesn’t always mean doing what your partner wants. Especially when it comes to sex.

The old “Not tonight, dear, I have a headache” thing is made fun of, but sometimes women–and men–feel like the only way they can get out of having sex with their partner is faking sick. In my opinion, it shouldn’t be that way. Just because you’ve given someone your heart doesn’t mean you always have to give them your body. But unfortunately, not everyone agrees.

In our society, there was once a perception that women were the property of men. First of their fathers, then their husbands. And that meant a man could do anything he wanted with his wife, and she couldn’t say no. In general, we’ve moved past that idea, but some people still believe it. Even when they don’t, sometimes people believe being in a relationship means giving in to your partner regardless of how you feel or what you want.

Being in a relationship doesn’t mean giving up your free will. To me, love means respect, and that includes respecting each other’s right to say no, whether it’s “No, I won’t pick you up after work” or “No, I won’t have sex with you.” It also means respecting yourself enough not to do something your partner wants if you aren’t on board with it.

Relationships take communication and cooperation, and that sometimes includes speaking up when you want to say no. And having that “no” accepted.

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