Sexting is when someone sends or receives a sexually explicit text, image or video on their mobile phone, usually in a text message. Find out how you can stay in control and what to do if a photo has fallen into the wrong hands.
What is sexting?
When people talk about sexting, they usually refer to sending and receiving:
- naked pictures or ‘nudes’
- ‘underwear shots’
- sexual or ‘dirty pics’
- rude text messages or videos
They can be sent from a friend, boyfriend, girlfriend or someone you’ve met online. You might have also sent a sexual photo, video or text to someone else.
We understand how easily sexting can happen and how things can go wrong – even when you didn’t mean for them to.
Sexting can happen for lots of reasons. You might:
- feel like ‘everyone else is doing it’ and want to fit in with in with friends – especially if they are boasting about sending or having photos on their mobile phone
- worry about being seen as ‘not sexy’, ‘frigid’ or ‘shy’ and go along with things you’re uncomfortable with
- feel under pressure to sext as a way of ‘proving’ your sexuality
- feel harassed, threatened or blackmailed into sending pictures
- feel it’s easier just to ‘give in’ to somebody who keeps asking for things
- think you ‘owe’ your boyfriend or girlfriend or made to feel guilty if you don’t do what they ask you for
- be in love with the person and trust them completely and feel like it’s OK
- have a long distance or online relationship with someone and want to have a sexual relationship with them
- feel proud of your body and want to share it with other people