The right to decide for yourself

A woman happily embracing the partner she chose.

In Germany, in principle all persons have the right to decide for themselves

  • whom they want to be with/have an intimate relationship with,
  • with whom and how often they want to have sex,
  • whether they want to marry,
  • whom they want to marry and
  • whether they want to live together without getting married.

It is not allowed for someone to be forced

  • to be with/have an intimate relationship with someone if s/he does not want to,
  • to have sex with someone if s/he does not want to,
  • to marry someone if s/he does not want to.

This applies to all persons in Germany, regardless of

  • which country they come from,
  • whether they are a man or a woman,
  • their religion,
  • the colour of their skin,
  • whether women want to be with men or men want to be with women (heterosexual),
  • whether women want to be with women or men want to be with men (homosexual).

Where can you get help if your right is violated?

If, against your will, someone wants to

  • be with you/have an intimate relationship with you,
  • marry you,
  • have sex with you or
  • if someone had sex with you against your will,

then you can

  1. go to the police and report this person.
  2. You can also always go to a counselling centre. You can get help at counselling centres without saying your name.

Protection of children and young people

There are special laws to protect children and young people.

Dictionary and translations

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