Sending sexual messages and pictures is now common. For some people, it’s just part of exploring their sexuality or part of flirting with a boyfriend, girlfriend or friend. All good fun, right? It is if you want to do it, don’t feel pressured, and don’t get bombarded with unwanted images.
Meeting people, sharing chat, ideas and images on social media is mostly great and can give you the freedom to be who you want to be:
But it can be limiting too – what’s expected of males and females isn’t always equal. Even if you’ve never watched porn, you’ll have seen ‘pornified’ images on social media - poses people do on their profiles and the type of images people send or request from each other in nude selfies. These are all originally from pornography. Girls’ bodies are expected to look a particular way and are judged more harshly than boys if they don’t fit that expectation. Girls and boys can feel pressured to be having sex and to send sexually explicit images but girls are more likely to be thought of as ‘slags’ if they do.
If you’re feeling pressured to send selfies, the Childline Zipit App is a useful tool to have on your phone.
For a lot of people it is good flirty fun when it’s a private message to someone they trust not to share it. But can you ever be 100% sure it won’t be passed on? Do you want that image to re-surface when a future employer looks at your online presence? Hmm, probably not!
So, think about how identifiable you are in your nude selfies; it is safer to send images that don’t show your face or any birthmarks/identifiable features.
If a sexually explicit image of you has leaked out, there are ways you can try and stop it going further, if not get rid of it completely. The Think you Know website explains how to remove content from Facebook, Youtube, Instagram, Tumblr, Kik, Snapchat, Vine, Twitter and Askfm.