A movement founded
by activist Chanel Contos lobbying for and providing holistic consent and
sexuality education.
A movement founded
by activist Chanel Contos lobbying for and providing holistic consent and
sexuality education.
Read all testimonies

The following testimonies were sent to me by those who passionately believe that inadequate consent education is reason for their sexual abuse during or soon after school. Please note dates are the graduating years. Victims and perpetrators will
remain anonymous.

Trigger warning: sexual assault
1800 Respect national helpline 1800 737 732
Lifeline 24 hour crisis line 131 114
Beyond Blue 1300 224 636
NSW child protection helpline 132 111

Barker
I was with my boyfriend we had just gone on a date and came back to my place to hang out. After a while we started making out and he started kissing my neck and touching my body. He then started to touch in between my legs on top of my shorts and said do you want to. I was to in the moment and scared to say no so I said yes he then went on to finger me and said can we go further I knew what he meant and I looked at him in his eyes for a second wanting to say no but knowing he will be mad if I say no so I said yes and he then took my shorts off and took his off and laid on top of me and started going in I laid there questioning everything not knowing what to do he then tells me to go on top so I there I go on top him pushing me up and down thankfully he thinks he here's my parents and stops. I never realized it was rape till a few weeks later when I looked back on how I felt and that I felt forced to say yes.
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Barker -

I was with my boyfriend we had just gone on a date and came back to my place to hang out. After a while we started making out and he started kissing my neck and touching my body. He then started to touch in between my legs on top of my shorts and said do you want to. I was to in the moment and scared to say no so I said yes he then went on to finger me and said can we go further I knew what he meant and I looked at him in his eyes for a second wanting to say no but knowing he will be mad if I say no so I said yes and he then took my shorts off and took his off and laid on top of me and started going in I laid there questioning everything not knowing what to do he then tells me to go on top so I there I go on top him pushing me up and down thankfully he thinks he here’s my parents and stops. I never realized it was rape till a few weeks later when I looked back on how I felt and that I felt forced to say yes.

Asquith Girls
I graduated from Asquith Girls in 2016. When I was in year 9, the first time I got drunk I ended up having sex with my then boyfriend despite telling him I wanted to wait until I was older. When we broke up I went to a male friends house 'for cheering up' and he got on top of me and pulled off my top, I didn't know how to say no but when I final left his house all I could do was cry. The following year I remember saying to a boy I liked at the time at a party that if I got so drunk that I couldn't respond, I give him consent to do whatever he wants with me because I thought that was what he wanted - I had sex with him that night (I don't really remember anything) In year 12, I was raped by a boy from Turramurra High. When I told some of my friends they responded "That's just how x is". To this day I struggle to catagorise whether these incidents were sex or assault or rape or what could have been done differently. All I know is that all these incidents feel so wrong, so much so that everytime I slept over at a boys house in 2017, I'd cry myself to sleep.
2016 click to read
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Asquith Girls - 2016

I graduated from Asquith Girls in 2016. When I was in year 9, the first time I got drunk I ended up having sex with my then boyfriend despite telling him I wanted to wait until I was older. When we broke up I went to a male friends house ‘for cheering up’ and he got on top of me and pulled off my top, I didn’t know how to say no but when I final left his house all I could do was cry. The following year I remember saying to a boy I liked at the time at a party that if I got so drunk that I couldn’t respond, I give him consent to do whatever he wants with me because I thought that was what he wanted – I had sex with him that night (I don’t really remember anything) In year 12, I was raped by a boy from Turramurra High. When I told some of my friends they responded “That’s just how x is”. To this day I struggle to catagorise whether these incidents were sex or assault or rape or what could have been done differently. All I know is that all these incidents feel so wrong, so much so that everytime I slept over at a boys house in 2017, I’d cry myself to sleep.

Ascham
I hope this is anon. I woke up in 2013, frozen and shook. I had a pain in stomach, leaves sitting around my bum. All I remembered was the night before flirting with a boy. A few months later my friend reminded me that I had gotten with a boy. I had apparently passed out in the snow and been having sex with riverview boy. and I couldn't even tell you the story all I know is that I couldn't remember what he looked like, what happened and how I got home. My virginity was taken from me and I can't even remember it.
2015 click to read
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Ascham - 2015

I hope this is anon. I woke up in 2013, frozen and shook. I had a pain in stomach, leaves sitting around my bum. All I remembered was the night before flirting with a boy. A few months later my friend reminded me that I had gotten with a boy. I had apparently passed out in the snow and been having sex with riverview boy. and I couldn’t even tell you the story all I know is that I couldn’t remember what he looked like, what happened and how I got home. My virginity was taken from me and I can’t even remember it.

St Vincent's, Potts Point
My school never taught consent in Sex Ed. The only Sex Ed we were taught was about general reproductive systems and anatomy. It was skimmed over and we were still so young to even understand. There had already been instances of sexual assault at other schools in the Eastern Suburbs. However, we were almost made to feel guilty and ashamed of our bodies. We weren't allowed to wear leggings or tight clothing on free dress days, low cut dresses were also disallowed for formal nights for girls who had a larger chest, yet girls wearing the same or similar dresses with a smaller bust were given the blind eye. I remember a girl being so upset at our formal because she felt victimised because of her body. This made it even harder to speak out when assaults happened because we already felt somewhat ashamed. The Sex Ed classes already in place do not even cover or delve into anything deeper than anatomy.
2020 click to read
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St Vincent's, Potts Point - 2020

My school never taught consent in Sex Ed. The only Sex Ed we were taught was about general reproductive systems and anatomy. It was skimmed over and we were still so young to even understand. There had already been instances of sexual assault at other schools in the Eastern Suburbs. However, we were almost made to feel guilty and ashamed of our bodies. We weren’t allowed to wear leggings or tight clothing on free dress days, low cut dresses were also disallowed for formal nights for girls who had a larger chest, yet girls wearing the same or similar dresses with a smaller bust were given the blind eye. I remember a girl being so upset at our formal because she felt victimised because of her body. This made it even harder to speak out when assaults happened because we already felt somewhat ashamed. The Sex Ed classes already in place do not even cover or delve into anything deeper than anatomy.

Anonymous
I was raped by someone who was also in my year level at school. I trusted this person and would never have had the foresight of this event happening. It has taken years to come to terms with the events that ensued. I refused to even call it for what it was until years after it had occurred. Following the rape, I had to attend school with my perpetrator for my final year, pushing aside the reality of what had really happened. It was almost as if I refused to come to terms with it because I knew if I did, I would be too afraid to face him. And that's exactly what happened once I finally accepted what had truly occurred that night. Every encounter since has ended in me having to leave because of the long lasting impact of the trauma I faced at school. In no way am I blaming his behaviour on my high school. However, I believe high schools should and MUST do better. No one deserves to experience this kind of trauma and be forced to face their perpetrator on the daily following the events while also managing getting an education. Consent is not optional. Consent is the bare minimum that should be in place every time an individual initiates any form of sexual encounter. And no - silence isn't a yes. Anything but an enthusiastic yes is a NO. Any body language that says otherwise shouldn't be ignored. All students should be raised to learn the basics of knowing what is and what isn't acceptable when it comes to sexual behaviours. Because when they don't, what follows causes the other party often unimaginable long lasting trauma, while the perpetrator continues to live unscathed and unaware of their devastating impact. The fact I have chosen to continue to keep this post completely anonymous without the schools name just proves how traumatic it can be. Speaking out 5 years later on the matter is still too painful to let the world know.
2017 click to read
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Anonymous - 2017

I was raped by someone who was also in my year level at school. I trusted this person and would never have had the foresight of this event happening. It has taken years to come to terms with the events that ensued. I refused to even call it for what it was until years after it had occurred.

Following the rape, I had to attend school with my perpetrator for my final year, pushing aside the reality of what had really happened. It was almost as if I refused to come to terms with it because I knew if I did, I would be too afraid to face him. And that’s exactly what happened once I finally accepted what had truly occurred that night. Every encounter since has ended in me having to leave because of the long lasting impact of the trauma I faced at school.

In no way am I blaming his behaviour on my high school. However, I believe high schools should and MUST do better. No one deserves to experience this kind of trauma and be forced to face their perpetrator on the daily following the events while also managing getting an education.

Consent is not optional. Consent is the bare minimum that should be in place every time an individual initiates any form of sexual encounter. And no – silence isn’t a yes. Anything but an enthusiastic yes is a NO. Any body language that says otherwise shouldn’t be ignored.

All students should be raised to learn the basics of knowing what is and what isn’t acceptable when it comes to sexual behaviours. Because when they don’t, what follows causes the other party often unimaginable long lasting trauma, while the perpetrator continues to live unscathed and unaware of their devastating impact.

The fact I have chosen to continue to keep this post completely anonymous without the schools name just proves how traumatic it can be. Speaking out 5 years later on the matter is still too painful to let the world know.

St Andrews Cathedral school
I was shocked to find out that my 50 yr old mother didn't know that blow jobs and fingering can be classified as rape, yet me a 16 yr old boy did. I had to pull up the Australian constitution to prove her wrong. It's something engrained in our Australian culture, in the fabric of every industry, even in our parliament building-and these behaviours are caused by the lack of education from schools on the subject.It must end.
2021 click to read
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St Andrews Cathedral school - 2021

I was shocked to find out that my 50 yr old mother didn’t know that blow jobs and fingering can be classified as rape, yet me a 16 yr old boy did. I had to pull up the Australian constitution to prove her wrong. It’s something engrained in our Australian culture, in the fabric of every industry, even in our parliament building-and these behaviours are caused by the lack of education from schools on the subject.It must end.

Nambour High
There were hundreds of incidents of men sexually assaulting their female classmates at parties. The only time it was taking seriously is when a student slapped a teacher's ass.
2013 click to read
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Nambour High - 2013

There were hundreds of incidents of men sexually assaulting their female classmates at parties. The only time it was taking seriously is when a student slapped a teacher’s ass.

Xavier Catholic College Ballina
It was a school organised event - [a camping trip] we were all in this tent type thing all bundled up together. A guy I liked was there. In the middle of the night I felt someone touching me, all over. I thought it was the guy that I was into & let it happen. The next day a different guy - a friend's boyfriend apologised and I felt disgusted by myself that I'd gone along with it not knowing who was touching me. A year later another guy asked for help with homework - I went to his house. He told me to get into bed & started touching me - I didn't like it but felt like I couldn't say anything, I just said I was tired but he kept doing it anyway. I ran away to a friend's house & told him what had happened - he essentially said "you deserved it" and I cried in his bathroom. The homework guy later followed my places like to my mum's workplace - pinning me against a wall & kissing me before walking away. These events, combined with others (worse but didn't occur in school) have resulted in my diagnosis of PTSD. I still have difficulty in my current relationship letting my boyfriend touch & kiss me. Please teach consent in school.
2014 click to read
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Xavier Catholic College Ballina - 2014

It was a school organised event – [a camping trip] we were all in this tent type thing all bundled up together. A guy I liked was there. In the middle of the night I felt someone touching me, all over. I thought it was the guy that I was into & let it happen. The next day a different guy – a friend’s boyfriend apologised and I felt disgusted by myself that I’d gone along with it not knowing who was touching me.

A year later another guy asked for help with homework – I went to his house. He told me to get into bed & started touching me – I didn’t like it but felt like I couldn’t say anything, I just said I was tired but he kept doing it anyway. I ran away to a friend’s house & told him what had happened – he essentially said “you deserved it” and I cried in his bathroom. The homework guy later followed my places like to my mum’s workplace – pinning me against a wall & kissing me before walking away.

These events, combined with others (worse but didn’t occur in school) have resulted in my diagnosis of PTSD. I still have difficulty in my current relationship letting my boyfriend touch & kiss me. Please teach consent in school.

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