Western Oregon University hosted two work shops on may 11th that talked about the pursuit of sexual wellness, the proper ways to give consent, and the struggles of alternative life styles. The S.W.A.T (sexual wellness awareness team) group had a workshop that described what the true definition of consent, exception of different types of lifestyles and relationships, and tips for helping others out of potentially harmful situations. The second was a presentation given by someone who is def and blind who was also going through the transition of changing from a women into a man.
S.W.A.T presented their points and information through skits, speeches, and random facts. The parts of the presentation that struck me the most is how they described the definition of consent. Consent when it comes to to sex is the presence of a yes when the option to say no is present and viable. If you are forced or pressured to say yes and have very little or no other options it is not considered true consent. I really liked this because it shows a lot of respect for the other person or persons that someone decides to have sex or sexual acts with. S.W.A.T also did an amazing job of performing a skit that showed the complexity of situations that can be considered sexual assault.
The other presentation given by the guest speaker about her transition from a women to a man and the ways they manage to deal with the world because of being def and blind. From this presentation I learned a lot about people learning to be sexually confident in who they know they are on the inside and that in order to be truly happy with yourself and who you are you must be brave enough to follow your heart and do what you truly want. Before the presentation I knew very little about people who are transsexual, but after the presentation I feel like I know some of the struggles presented to the trans community.
What I really took away from both of these presentations at the end of the day is that I am so proud to be a student here at Western Oregon University. I am so proud to belong to a school that makes such a effort to be excepting and respectful of people of all sexual orientations and that is so conscious of its communities sexual safety and well-being. This school has been wonderful when it comes to excepting other and making people feel excepted. In my time here at Western Oregon University over the past 4 years I have met a lot of people and most made me feel safe and excepted and I think half that feeling is from the community around me and the other is Western Oregon Universities commitment to trying to protect people and keep them safe though their clubs and policies.
If you want to learn more about S.W.A.T and what they offer they are located in Abby’s House on the bottom floor of the Werner Center. Please feel free to come by and ask questions if you have any because S.W.A.T will be happy to answer them and give helpful advice. If you want to go to the Abby’s House website follow the link at the bottom of the page!