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bear by san

February 2017



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criminal minds fate

This is just to say:

To everybody who has opined recently that sexual harassment policies at conventions mean an end to flirtation, dating, and romance at cons--

I'm involved in a relationship with somebody I met, befriended, and grew to love largely at conventions. He never once felt the need to grope me, make an inappropriate comment on my body or dress, or ask if anything I was wearing was meant as a coded sexual message before the moment when we figured out that we were each interested in one another in a romantic sense.

Neither flirting nor building emotional connection is harassment, folks--and harassment is not flirting.

It's not actually all that complicated.


There are people who make mistakes, or who behave in a compulsive manner, or who have bad social skills--and there are those who very carefully orchestrate their attacks in order to hide them from people in a position to stop them.

One is being a jerk, and one is being a predator, and they are different.

But, yeah--it's not THAT HARD to obtain consent for a hug. You (general) make eye contact (preferably with somebody you've known for at least fifteen minutes), open your arms slightly, and wait to see if they make a similar gesture. If they don't, or if they say, "I'm sorry, hugging makes me uncomfortable," you say, "Oh, sorry, thanks for letting me know.

I usually say, "Do you hug?" Unless I'm talking to a small child family member or friend, in which I'm more explicit: "Would you like a hug? Or a handshake? Or a high-five? Or not?"

Happened more than once that the kid shook their head, and then, upon realizing that I was ACTUALLY RESPECTING THEIR DECISION WITHOUT BEING THE LEAST UPSET OR AWKWARD, then changed their mind and decided that they DID want a hug.

There may be a more general lesson there.
I am so happy about high-fives. My nieces are being taught high-fives as a way that they can have positive contact with people without having to be squozen or smooched by someone they only see once or twice a year. Hurray for high-fives!
I would like to express my admiration for the example of the past tense of "squoze".

And the high-fives.
I second the observation about kids, as both an interactor-with and guardian-of.

For adults, I usually go with: "are we on hugging terms?"