Let’s face it, sext happens. There are many different reasons you may be sexting: you’re in a long distance relationship, or you’d rather do it virtually than physically. No matter why you choose to sext, there are ways to play it safe so that if you ever change your mind, have regrets, or want to run for President, you’re not haunted by your digital past.
1. Keep Your Face Out of It What would happen if you break up, your phone gets stolen, or your photo gets forwarded? The picture that was meant for your beloved’s eyes only could become as viral as videos of dancing babies or cats dressed as sharks on a Roomba machine (look it up, it’s hysterical). To play it safe, keep your face or any distinguishing marks (tattoos, for example) out of the picture. At least if this picture gets leaked, your identity has a better chance of remaining anonymous (and this will guarantee you don’t make any awkward duck faces).
2. Keep Sexting a DIY Activity Sure it can be fun and funny to gossip with your girlfriends about what’s happening in your love life, but sexting shouldn’t be talked about too far and wide. To keep the possibility of leaking your low-down activities, well, low, write your own messages and take your own photos.
3. Send, then Delete ASAP If you lost your phone and a stranger picked it up, what would they find? Would your friends scroll on to anything you didn’t want them to see as they’re looking through your photo album to check out a pic of that new dress you just bought? To be safe with your sexts, whether they’re words or pictures, press send, then immediately delete.
4. Leave Something to the Imagination, For Your Own Safety Covering up and leaving something to the imagination can be just as fun and exciting as baring all, and it is definitely much, MUCH safer for you. Remember, taking and sending sexually explicit pictures, even if they’re self-portraits, can be considered a felony, as you are technically creating and disseminating images of minors. Less is more when it comes to sexting–less skin, that is. If you’re at all nervous or uncomfortable about sending or receiving sexts, then don’t do it. If your potential partner can’t deal with talking about or doing these things in person, or waiting until you are comfortable with the situation before moving forward, then they are not worth it. If you’re going to sext, sext smart. If you have any reservations whatsoever, then just don’t do it. The only safe sext is no sext at all. *Remember, WHENEVER you’re sending or sharing information or photos of yourself, you run the risk of having someone (like a parent, college admissions officer, or future boss) see it. So, be careful with what you put out there!