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Say What You Want

lots of guys feel the need to give the girl the explicit option to decline sexual escalation. and this is encouraged by e.g. “anti-rape” feminists.

if she says time to go, and you say “you gotta kiss me first”, you are not forcing her. she can decline. she still has the option to decline. i bet you she knows how to say “haha no thanks” or many other things.

this applies to other stuff too. if you say “pay me $200/hr for this”, you don’t have to say “or if that doesn’t work for you, you could negotiate a lower rate”. they have the option to try to negotiate a lower rate without you telling them. it’s not your responsibility to suggest to them that they counter-offer. and it’s not your responsibility to suggest to a girl you want to kiss that she consider the “no” option in addition to the “yes” option.

not explicitly telling people they can say “no” is not force, it’s not rape, it’s not aggression. it’s perfectly reasonable.

bringing up the options you don’t want people to do just communicates you think there’s some reason they should or will seriously consider them. you are encouraging people to say now. you communicate there is something wrong with your proposal and/or you lack confidence and/or you are really passive/beta (it’s actually possible to be confident that saying “want to have sex? or also want to not have sex? your choice!” is the right and morally best thing to do. it’s very rare to be totally confident and say that, but a mix of partly lack of confidence and partly thinking it’s morally right is common.)

phrasing matters. if you think it doesn’t, then why do people resist saying “do X” instead of “would you like X, or not?” all resistance on this topic is because people are aware it matters. but it’s merely being assertive, not aggressive. it’s making a judgement about what should happen next and saying so, rather than asking the other person to decide for you. it’s good to make decisions yourself and doesn’t stop people from saying “no” if they want to. lots of people, especially girls in a dating context, would rather that you judge and they only have to think or take charge if a problem comes up, but by default you make good judgments and they go along with it. be the person who makes good judgments, instead of another person who is scared to think and decide and say so.

Ironically, lots of people only argue their side in what's supposed to be a truth-seeking, objective discussion. They look at things one way and try to say why their side is right, and other sides are wrong. But they don't think through what's good about alternative ideas and what's bad about their own idea. They are biased. But then when it comes to social interaction, a lot of people start being more broad minded – instead of only saying what they want, they also bring up alternative ideas they don't want.

Elliot Temple on May 31, 2015

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