Age of Consent
The age that you can legally have sex in the UK is 16. The age is the same for everyone, whether you’re male, female, transgender, bi, straight, or gay.
It is illegal to have sexual activity with someone under 16. However, if both partners are under the age of 16, a similar age, and both agree to have sexual activity it is unlikely they will be prosecuted. The law is there to protect young people from being pressured into sex.
Crucial: Even if the police decide against prosecution, the young person’s parents or the young person themself still can.
Children under the age of 13 are given special protection and cannot give consent to any sexual activity. Sex with a child under the age of 13 can result in a life sentence in prison.
Instant Expert: Read the full Law on Sex factsheet http://www.fpa.org.uk/factsheets/law-on-sex
If you're under 16, you can still get confidential advice about contraception, emergency contraception and sexual health.
Coercive Control and abusive relationships
Abusive relationships happen when one person has more power and treats the other person badly some or all of the time. In relationships like this, the abusing partner may assume they always have consent, or the partner being abused may go along with things because they feel trapped, unsafe or bad about themselves.
This is not consent. It is coercive control, or domestic abuse.
Coercive control is when a person with whom you are personally connected, repeatedly behaves in a way which makes you feel controlled, dependent, isolated or scared. This is not love, it is abuse.
Find out more: Visit Consent is Everything, which was produced by the Thames Valley Sexual Violence Prevention Group to explore issues around coercive control and respect in relationships.
Disrespect NoBody is a place where you can find out what is and isn't ok in relationships.
When you disrespect someone's body, you disrespect the person too. This video matches animated body parts to boxers talking with their friends for advice on the different ways to spot consent.