"When we talk about things like rape culture and consent culture, we often don’t give nearly enough attention to the importance of parenting and supporting parents. Parenting is hard work, and it’s a complex job, and there are tremendous social pressures at work on parents, with endless conflicting advice on the ‘right’ way to raise kids. We need to be affirming positive, supportive parenting that helps children grow into independent, confident, assertive people who know their boundaries and respect those of others — and we also need to acknowledge that the burden here isn’t solely on parents.
While I don’t have the responsibility of raising other people’s children, I do have the responsibility of carefully thinking about my interactions with kids. Children are impressionable, especially around the friends of their parents or people their parents admire and respect. That’s a huge responsibility, and it needs to be taken seriously. How would I have wanted to be treated as a child? How can I affirm a child’s right to her own body, feelings, and opinions? These are things I think about even in momentary interactions with children, because children are human beings, and they should be respected."