By now, we all know what the term "sexting" refers to, but if you don't, it's sending nude or scandalous photos of oneself to lovers, hopeful lovers, etc.
We also know sexting can be pretty risky business, especially for those who under the age of 18. Parents have cringed over teen sexting scandals, and legal proceedings have taken place with good reason. It's also something that breaks a lot of barriers in vulnerability and privacy. And overall, it's looked at as something very negative and receives tons of judgement.
However, despite legalities and privacy concerns, studies concluded 9 percent of adult cell phone users have sent a sext, and 20 percent have received a sext. This information definitely suggests less judging and more educating.
Instead of judging you for sending sexts, I'd rather provide you with six questions to ask yourself before you actually send that photo:
1. Why do they want the photos?
This may seem like an odd question to ask, but in certain circumstances, it could determine your feelings about sending a nude photo. Have you been flirty with this person, and sexting isn't an off-the-wall act? Or, did this acquaintance randomly ask?
If it's random, chances are, they don't just want the photos for themselves. This leads us to question two.
2. Is this person trustworthy?
Most women and men who send nude photos will want the recipient to be trustworthy and feel confident the photo will only remain between the two parties. If you feel this won't be the case, don't send the photo.
3. Am I comfortable with what is being asked of me?
If you have a specific request that makes you a little uncomfortable, it's OK to compromise or deviate. For instance, if you're being asked for a completely nude photo, but you're not comfortable doing that, leave your bra and/or panties on. That can be equally as hot.
Besides, you should make them work for it. Sometimes playing hard to get is a good tactic.
4. Face or no face?
This is more of a preference, but a decision that's up to you as the sender. Do you include your face in the photo or not?
Not featuring your face makes it less likely you'd be identified if the photo were to be seen by unintended eyes. It also could make you feel better about taking the photo. If you aren't 100 percent confident in your body (we've all been there) or in your relationship status with the person on the other end, don't feel like you have to include your face in the shot.
5. Am I sending it for them or for me?
There's a difference between sending a nude photo because you're really into someone and sending a photo to someone you want to like you. Being naked isn't necessarily going to make you closer. Even if you simply want a bit of attention, the main reason you should be sending a nude photo is because you want to, not because you're trying to appease someone else.
6. Do I want to?
The absolute most important answer to give yourself is whether or not you actually want to send a nude photo. It's your body and your privacy on the line. Literally, no matter the reason, if you don't want to send it, you don't have to. If the intended recipient gets mad, maybe they aren't worth it, anyway.
Like consenting to being sexual with someone in person, sending a nude photo is very personal and can vary from person to person. Some may choose to only send nude photos to significant others. Some will choose to send one to hookups and acquaintances. Some may even choose to never send any kind of sext message.
Don't let pressure make your decision for you because it's ultimately your decision.