Well, consensual sex that is.

In fact, let’s just start by defining the term “consensual sex.”

Consensual sex is two adults willingly and verbally agreeing to engage in sexual activity with each other.

Not too difficult to understand, right?

But there are many misunderstandings associated with the term “consensual sex”

Because in our culture, the line that separates consensual sex from nonconsensual sex has been blurred.

If you are intoxicated can you give sexual consent?

If you are dating or married to someone, is there still a need for sexual consent?

If you flirt with a guy and wear sexy, revealing clothing are you basically asking for sex?

If you’ve had consensual sex with this person before, should it already be assumed that your next sexual encounter is consensual?

And if you’re already having sex with someone but change your mind in the middle of it, is it consensual sex?

The answer to all of these questions is no.

And I’ll explain why.


 

  1. Intoxication 

If someone is intoxicated or high, they cannot give sexual consent.

The reason for this is because when you’re drunk or high, your thinking is altered and you could be making drunk decisions that you wouldn’t have made if you were sober.

If sexual activity does occur between someone who is drunk and someone who is sober, the responsibility for the misinterpretation belongs to the sober person and it is considered rape.

If both parties are intoxicated, the responsibility falls on the person who initiated the sexual activity.

Just think of it like this: if you’re too drunk to drive, you’re too drunk to have sex.


 

   2.   Married/Dating

Just because you’re married or dating someone, does not mean that you have to have sex with them.

You’re not obligated to sleep with someone just because you’ve entered a relationship with them.

Consent should be absolutely clear every single time you have sex, and the only way to have clear consent is to verbally say “Yes.”

Even married people should only have sex when they actually want to.


 

3. Clothing/Teasing

I’m going to try and make this as clear as possible.

If I am wearing clothing that is considered “revealing,” that does not mean in any way at all that I am inviting you to have sex with me.

Let’s look at it like this,

If I buy a beautiful brand new Mercedes-Benz and drive it around the town, I am not inviting you to take my car and give it a spin.

Just like if I’m wearing a pretty dress, I’m not hinting that you should take it off.

The only way someone could possibly be “asking for sex” is if someone literally says, “I want to have sex with you.”

Let’s not blame the victim or what they were wearing, let’s blame the rapist.


 

4.  Previous Sexual Consent

Again, consent must be given every single time someone has sex.

Let’s look at it like this, if you went out to dinner with someone last night then they shouldn’t be showing up at your door tonight assuming that you’re free to have dinner with them again. But when you tell them no, they get angry and start screaming, “But we had dinner last night and you were enjoying it! Why can’t we go out again tonight?!”

That’d be strange and you’d probably shut the door in their face.

So it doesn’t matter if you’ve had sex with someone before.

It doesn’t matter they’re asking for it again and calling you a “tease” or a “slut” because they know you’re “dtf.”

Just because you’ve engaged in sexual activity with someone before does not take away your power to say “No.”

You’re not a tease. They’re just disgusting.


 

5. Current Consensual Sexual Activity Turned Nonconsensual

People can change their mind once they’re already engaged in sexual activity.

If you begin having sex, that does not mean that you have to continue having sex.

Just verbally say that you no longer want to be engaged in that activity and if they stop, it’s not considered rape because you already consented.

However, if the activity continues, it’s considered sexual assault/rape.


 

I know that this topic is difficult to discuss and that many people misunderstand the line that defines consensual sex from nonconsensual sex, but that is exactly why I wrote this: to clarify.

Because when I was in high school, I had no idea what determined nonconsensual sex from consensual sex.

I thought it was simple.

I thought “sexual assault” could only occur when a poor girl was walking down the street and a random maniac popped out of the bushes and attacked her.

But according to RAINN (The nation’s largest anti-sexual assault organization),

“82% of sexual assaults are perpetrated by a non-stranger.”

Most victims feel that it’s their own fault because they were drunk, or dating the attacker, or flirting with them, or have had sexual relations with the attacker before.

But it is never the victims fault.

So let’s promote the understanding of this difficult topic and make it clear just what is “sexual consent” and what it is not.

If you’re a victim of sexual assault or know someone who is and is struggling,

Here are a couple help lines:

  • RAINN – 1-800-656-HOPE
  • Safe Horizon – 212-227-3000

 

And if you have any more questions concerning consensual sex, watch this amazing video:

 

Facebook – Becca Tremmel

Instagram – @littlelionbecca

Twitter – @BeccaTremmel

I’m not really sure when the rumors began spreading.

It was long before I knew who you were.

I’ve heard things.

A lot of things.

I heard that you went out on a few dates with some poor guy and then led him on for months while you happily watched him suffer.

I heard that you spilled all of your secrets on the internet just to get back at people due to your desperation for others’ attention.

I heard that you slept in a different bed every single night for a month.

And believe me when I say that, sadly, those aren’t the worst of them.


 

I listened to everything that was said about you.

I began to convince myself that I knew you and that I was well-versed in your life story.

If someone happened to bring you up, I had my opinion of you and your reputation ready to go just so I could add to the conversation.

I’d always ask if they knew you personally,

They’d say no.

They’d go on spewing rumors.

And I’d listen.

But then I heard conflicting stories that would disprove some of those rumors until nothing about you seemed to make any sense.

Then the realization hit.

I actually have no idea who you are. 

And I actually have no idea if anything that’s being said about you is true.

Because we’ve never sat down together over coffee and confessed our life stories.

I don’t know your middle name or what your passions are.

I don’t know why you and your ex-boyfriend broke up.

And I don’t know if all these horrible rumors about you are causing you to cry uncontrollably into your teddy bear every night while you ask, “Why is this happening to me?”

I don’t know. 

So why would I pretend like I do?


 

I’ve learned over the past few years that you cannot control what other people think.

You can send a love letter out into the world with the best intentions only to receive a note back saying, “Stop trying to get attention.”

You can walk around with your head held high with confidence radiating from your body only to hear a person mumble under their breath, “She is disgustingly full of herself.”

You can introduce yourself to somebody new with the kindest smile you can bear but they could be thinking, “Oh… I’ve heard things about her.”

You will never be able to control what anybody has to say or think about you.

And that can be maddening.


 

I’ll be the first to admit that I’ve thought horrible things about other people.

People I didn’t know very well.

People I knew like the back of my hand.

We’ve all done it. We’re all guilty. And we’re all victims. 

Unless I’m the only one.

If so… well then crap.

But I’m pretty confident that it’s not just me.


 

With that said, I’d like to tell you that I’m sorry.

I’m sorry for any rumor I’ve helped spread that was about you.

I’m sorry for judging you for the amount of guys you’ve kissed.

I’m sorry for any mean thought that has popped into my head while walking past you.

I am so sorry.

Because whether the rumors are true or not, nobody deserves to walk around a college campus while having to drag their horrible reputation behind them.

It doesn’t matter if the rumors are true.

It doesn’t matter if the rumors are false.

You can sleep in your own bed tonight or someone else’s.

You can go on dates with a guy and then stop for whatever reason.

You can do whatever the eff you want.

Because it is nobody else’s goddamn business.


 

We’re all allowed to make mistakes.

We’re all allowed to forgive ourselves and each other.

And wouldn’t it be nice if we didn’t have to hear about those same mistakes over and over again from other people for the next four years of our lives?

I’m begging people to stop. 

I’m begging people to just be kind.

Because I know how impossible life can be when the world is screaming, “Nobody likes you” back in your face.

Why would anyone want someone to think that about themselves?

I really hope you don’t think that about yourself.

Because you are so loved.

You are so important.

And I am so sorry for any harm I’ve caused you.

Don’t let anything that anybody ever says stop you from being exactly who you are.

Because odds are they don’t even know who you are.

So, please keep being kind.

Please keep being you. 

 

 

Facebook – Becca Tremmel

Instagram – @littlelionbecca

Twitter – @BeccaTremmel

 

 

Stop it.

Don’t you dare message her on Facebook.

I know, you already “liked” her most recent profile picture.

And you “favorited” her tweet last night that was some quote by F. Scott Fitzgerald.

Maybe you even got a little freaky and retweeted it.

Wait, did you swipe right on her tinder pic?

Well then she has to know you’re interested by now, right?


This is considered flirting nowadays.

But what if, hear me out, what if..

You just went up and asked her out on a date.

To dinner.

In person.

*earth shatters*

We live in a world where confrontation is our absolute last resort and instead of a guy walking up to a young lady and asking,

“Hi there, I noticed you from across the room and I was wondering if you’d like to get coffee with me some time?”

They send messages saying,

“U got kik?”

Stop it.


Now, don’t get me wrong. I know why confrontation is mortifying.

What if she says no?

What if she thinks you’re a creep?

It’s absolutely terrifying putting yourself out there and making the first move. Especially when you’re not behind a computer screen.

But I’m going to let you in on a little secret….

Girls want you to ask them out.

We want to be sitting alone in a coffee shop when you walk up to our table and tell us we look nice that day.

Because if we’re being honest we spent 30 minutes deciding if our hair looked okay up in a ponytail.

We want to be walking to math class when you stop us and ask, “Hey, would you like to get dinner with me next week?”

We actually fantasize about it all the time.

We don’t fantasize about getting random Facebook messages saying, “U hav a gr8 body wud u wanna hang sum time?”

No.

No I would not.


I get it, guys.

Being vulnerable was never a walk in the park.

But if we really think about it… what’s the worst that could happen?

She could say no.

….and that’s about it.

She’s not going to laugh hysterically in your face and tell everyone at your school that you’re a pathetic sicko until your life becomes a black hole filled with despair and tragedy.

Unless she’s a character from the movie “Mean Girls.”

Then run.


People used to go on dates

Or that’s what someone told me once.

I don’t know if I believe them.

Because dating today is nonexistent. We don’t dress up in nice clothes and take each other to fancy dinners. We don’t take walks around the park or buy each other ice cream cones before going to see that awesome new movie that just came out. We don’t make commitments. And we only make promises just to see how burned the other person will be once they break.

We don’t date.

Instead we go to each others’ houses and watch Netflix until someone makes the first move. We have dozens of almost relationships that we label as “things.”

People don’t commit anymore.

And then they randomly stop talking to you one day and you’re sitting there like an idiot thinking “What on earth did I do wrong?”

But they never promised they would stay.

And you didn’t either.

We walk away from each other because we never care enough to actually stay.

And then we bump into someone else who just got out of an “almost relationship”

And we do it all over again.

Just because we can.

Messed up, isn’t it?


Well we can change it.

By being brave and putting ourselves out there.

So how do you get the girl properly?

You ask her on a real date.

You tell her she looks really pretty in that blue dress.

You take her to a fancy dinner.

You respect her boundaries and don’t try to kiss her on the first date.

You ask her out again.

You buy her lavender ice cream.

You hold her hand down sidewalks.

And you only kiss her when you’re both comfortable with it.

That’s all there is to it.

And that, my friend is how you get the girl.

 

Facebook – Becca Tremmel

Instagram – @littlelionbecca

Twitter – @beccatremmel

 

P.S. a girl can absolutely ask a guy out on a date properly, too. And guys can ask guys. And girls can ask girls. So go out and catch yourself a bae.

 

 

 

“What’re you in for?”

She asked that as I sat down at the cafeteria table where the rest of the 20 year old girl patients were sitting.

“Dammit, Kate. Could you be more blunt?” asked the girl sitting across from me. She was Kate’s roommate. Kate rolled her eyes and looked back at me.

Waiting.

I sunk into myself a bit.

“Well you don’t have to answer if you don’t want to.” sighed Kate.

“No it’s okay.” I said, because I figured I’d have to tell my story quite a few times while I was there in the psychiatric hospital.

“I have PTSD and MDD. Also they upped the dosage of my anti-depressants last month and ever since then I’ve been having suicidal thoughts.”

Everyone at the table nodded and continued to eat the questionable cafeteria food. Almost like everything I’d just confessed was completely normal…

Well that’s because it is completely normal to them.

I looked back at Kate and asked, “What about you? Why’re you here?”

Kate’s roommate, Cori dropped her fork and yelled “I hate this game. This why’re-you-here game. I really don’t want to play. Can I not? I’m out. I lose.”

Everybody stared at Cori for a minute, but then Kate turned her attention back towards me and said,

“Well I guess I should tell you since you told me.”

Kate continued on to tell her story of why she was there. I won’t repeat her story though, for it is not my story to tell. I learned a lot of horrible stories about many other patients that week. I never learned Cori’s, though.

And nobody learned more about mine.

For example,

the reason why I have Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder.

Because we weren’t there to live in our past and dwell there. We were in that psych ward because we had survived the brink of death and now we were ready to look towards the future. We wanted to let the past go, so we avoided talking about it. But here I am, spilling my secrets in hopes that it’ll enlighten someone or give me courage.


News that I was in the psych ward spread quicker than I thought possible but nobody knew exactly why I was in there or what happened.

I am NOT upset or embarrassed that people know.

In fact, I wanted many of my close friends and family to know. I also wanted my darling sorority to know.

I don’t want to treat this experience like it’s this horrible secret that no one should ever hear about, because that’s not how I feel about it at all.

Soooo let me clarify a few things:

  • I’m NOT ashamed that I was admitted into a psychiatric hospital
  • I’m NOT ashamed that I have a disease or two
  • I’m NOT ashamed for seeking help
  • and I’m NOT ashamed for having issues… word on the street is that we all have ’em.

Let’s learn a bit more about my issues then (woo!),

I have PTSD (Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder) and MDD (Major Depressive Disorder).

I only started medication to treat these diseases in September. My chemical levels have been completely out of wack because they’ve been increasing and decreasing dosages as well as switching medications.

It’s been horrible.

Sadly, some of theses medications have a super sucky side effect, suicidal thoughts. Pretty much the definition of super sucky. And before I continue with my story, I want to clarify something else,

I did NOT attempt to commit suicide. However, I was having suicidal thoughts.

That does not mean I’m condemning those who have attempted. In fact,

I find those people to be incredibly strong.

They have the strength to be alive right now even though their diseases were one shred away from taking away their lives.

No, my reason for clarifying my actions, or in-actions, is because I really… REALLY can’t have people coming up to me and asking me why I tried to “off myself” or how I tried to do it. That would probably be the least helpful thing that I could experience right now.

Well now you know why I was in the psych ward, now I’m betting that you’re wondering what it was like…


Well to be honest, I felt like I was in that movie “It’s Kind of a Funny Story.” Psych wards don’t feel like an actual place…

just a dream, or sometimes a nightmare.

I basically roamed the hospital halls for five days while in a state of delirium due to my medications changing.

I was pushed to attend constant therapy sessions where we talked about my feelings and my recovery plan over and over and over again.

I was also ridded of every single possession of mine that one could use to commit suicide… including my crayons (Yeah I never really understood that one either. I mean c’mon, crayons?)

And even though I felt like a two year old who had to be constantly supervised by a team of doctors and a spent 1/3 of my time rolling my eyes at some of the ridiculous questions I was asked,

it was still one of the most beneficial experiences that I’ve ever had.

I’m not going to lie, I was terrified of the people I was going to have to meet and live with in the psych ward. We have this horrible stigma that’s tied to what we’ve seen and heard about psychiatric hospitals. Most of that stigma comes from the media. Movies and television shows make psych wards and mental health patients look completely insane and terrifying.

This needs to stop.

The people in that psychiatric hospital were the most genuine and most loving people I’ve ever met.

They were kind people who have been treated horribly by this world. And do you know what most of these beautiful people thought about constantly in the hospital? No, they didn’t think too much about getting better or learning how to love themselves.

Most of these patients were worried about keeping their jobs once they had been released.

They were concerned with how many friends and family were going to leave their side because they were “uncomfortable” with the mental health disease that these patients suffer from. How horrible is that?

They should be focusing on realizing their self-worth and learning to cope with their diseases rather than trying to figure out how to keep their job because their boss has a stigma for mental disorders. Doesn’t that defeat the entire purpose of staying in a psychiatric hospital?

This makes me so sad

People are ashamed of who they are and embarrassed because they have a disorder. That’s more sickening than the actual disease.

Even now after I’ve left the hospital and confirmed to everyone that I was there, I still see the shame people have due to their mental illnesses. So many of my dear friends and people I’ve only spoken with once have been confessing to me that they’ve been admitted into a psychiatric hospital at one point and that they’ve struggled with mental illnesses,

but they’ve never told anyone.

And this is why I’m telling everyone.

I’m not writing this for attention. I’m not writing this to tell you I’m actually crazy and that every mental health patient is crazy. No, I’m writing this for those people who are ashamed or embarrassed of their mental disorder.


Yes, I’m writing this directly to you.

You are outstanding.

You are one of the strongest people who has ever walked on this earth and you are way too special to worry about the judgements of uneducated people who are uncomfortable with mental illnesses.

You didn’t choose this life.

You didn’t choose this disease.

And you don’t deserve to be ashamed of how much you’ve overcome.

You should be celebrating the fact that you’re still alive today and you’re still kicking depression’s ass, because that thing is an absolute monster.

And every person who you’ve ever loved should be there celebrating with you too.

I idolize your strength.


My little confession blog turned into me ranting, but that’s chill. Hopefully you learned something. So here are the main points of this post:

  • I’m not ashamed of my time in a psychiatric hospital
  • I have Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and Major Depressive Disorder
  • I didn’t attempt to commit suicide
  • Mental Illnesses patients are actual angels who roam the earth fighting a constant battle
  • We need to change how we view mental illnesses and those who suffer from them
  • We need to do that ^ right frickin’ now
  • You should celebrate your accomplishments and strength

Also, I’m so incredibly thankful for such an amazing support system. My room was covered with gifts and cards and letters and food that lovely people brought me. And thank you to all of my visitors. If I had any doubt that people cared about me, that doubt was crushed about an hour into my stay at the hospital. I cannot begin to describe how much you all mean to me.

I love you and thank you for reading this incredibly long confession/rant,

Becca Tremmel