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Monday, June 10, 2019

IMPACT Grads Talk about Consent and Boundaries

 "I'm much more comfortable dropping into my 'take me seriously' voice." Chloe
Graduates who have reported intrusive or unsafe situations after the class, often say taking a strong stance and using a powerful voice (no matter how loud) was typically all they needed to do to disrupt a potentially uncomfortable or threatening situation. At its foundation, IMPACT is focused on people building the skills to be able to say YES to what they want and NO to what they don’t want.

We recently asked IMPACT Chicago Facebook Friends if IMPACT had helped them to come to any realization or new understandings about consent and boundaries. Below are some responses.

IMPACT Chicago graduate Lauren notes that she developed a  deep understanding of consent and bodily autonomy:
"I took the course almost 10 years ago, but since then I have thought about consent 100% differently. Not just my own--but now that I have a son--I respect his bodily autonomy and teach him that his body is HIS--and that no one has a "right" to it. I hope as he grows up this translates to a better understanding of the way he approaches other people and respects their boundaries."

Mingkwan took her first course in Tokyo and then at IMPACT Chicago. She shared two stories about how she has put her IMPACT training into practice.
"I was walking towards Tokyo station at night when I saw a man strangling a woman. It was a very crowded place in Tokyo. So many people were looking at them, but they didn't do anything. I wasn't sure if it was domestic violence or he had mental issues but I started to observe to see if he had weapons. Then I grabbed her hand and we ran from there together. I asked if she wanted to call the police but she refused. After she left, I called the police and told them what happened and asked them to patrol the area."

"This happened after I moved back to Thailand. I was walking through a dark and isolated alley at night when  a man approached me. He said, 'Honey, I want to ask you something. Can I f--- you.' Without IMPACT, I'd have been terrified and felt powerless. But I started to observe my surroundings. Even though it was a dark alley, I lived nearby and knew the area well. I knew that I could ask for help and he was standing faraway from me so he couldn't harm me. So I said, 'No, I'm good. I don't think having sex with you would be fun. If you were good at it, girls would have come to you and you wouldn't have to stand here and ask this question. He looked really shocked. I walked away. I know you've heard this a thousand times, but thank you for transforming my life."

IMPACT Chicago graduate Chloe (pictured and quoted above) also wrote about her experience of the IMPACT Core Program in IMPACT, Diva Remix.

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