Sexting is the sending of sexually explicit photos, images, text messages, or e-mails using a cell phone or other mobile device. The recent wiener sexting scandal highlights the risks of this trend. There was an article recently in a sunday paper about Professor Sherry Turkle and her fears of the potentially harmful effects and hazards of sexting. The article reported that:
‘An estimated 40 per cent of people under 18, some as young as 11, have sent or received sexually explicit photos, with the same proportion believing there is “nothing wrong” with sexting (sending or receiving) a topless photograph.’
Research shows there’s no harm in it amongst consenting adults, instead it is healthier for the couple in a troubled relationship. So, what are you waiting for ladies, pick your phone and text.. sorry start SEXTING your husband, boyfriend, fiance: “I wanna talk some explicit things to you. Are you in?” And wait for the responses that are going to be hurled at you. New emojis have been introduced to make sexting more interesting! There are reasons that it might not be a good idea sexting a picture of your breasts, your vulva or your penis to a boyfriend or girlfriend. But that’s not because there’s anything ‘wrong’ with breasts, vulvas or penises.
I always feel very disturbed when words such as ‘lewd’, ‘obscene’ and ‘pornography’ enter the discussion. They make people feel bad about themselves and bad about sex. Some youngsters have felt suicidal over private photos finding their way into the public domain through social media using that kind of language, and the attitude behind it, makes the situation even harder for them. To be told that your photos are ‘obscene’ or ‘lewd’ is only going to make you feel worse.
I would recommend any young person to avoid sexting unless they’re perfectly happy for their classmates, colleagues, friends and acquaintances, including their relatives and their parents seeing the pictures. But if a youngster does sext, and if the pictures are subsequently distributed on social media, that youngster needs to know the consequenses longterm. There’s nothing to get upset about, apart from a breach of trust. There’s no need to feel ashamed or embarrassed. Every female has a vulva, every male a penis, it's no big deal. Parents need to be open and give guidence on things like sexting that could follow them for many years to come.