Study finds link between sexting and risky behavior

Have you ever engaged in sexting? You know. Sent a naked photo of yourself to someone? If so, it's likely that you also have engaged in other risky behavior.

That's the finding of a new study by students at the Community College of Philadelphia. They surveyed 1,020 people between the ages of 12 to 82 from November 2012 to February and discovered that respondents who send out racy text messages to a potential love interest were more likely to have engaged in unprotected sex with a person who was not a long-term partner (59 percent as compared to 26 percent of non-sexters) and also were more likely to have used an illegal drug in the past 30 days (33 percent as compared to 19 percent of non-sexters). Those who engage in sexting also were more likely to have had sex under the influence of drugs or alcohol that they later regretted (46 percent as compared to 22 percent of non-sexters).

"What we found was that sexting was related to other risky sexual behavior," Rick Frei, the instructor who organized the study, told me earlier this week.

While some of the sexting findings fall into the well-duh category, I was fascinated by the reasons respondents gave for why they sexted. They are:

1) To sexually arouse their partner.

2) Boredom

3) Enjoy doing it

4) Proposition for sex

5) Sexually arouse themselves  

So, what do you know? People who sext are doing it more for their own enjoyment than for the pleasure of the recipient. That's something to remember the next time you get a X-rated message on your phone. 

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