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The DL On Sexting
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Sexting - sending sexual texts or naked/underwear shots of yourself seems like it’s a big deal these days, like everyone’s doing it.

It’s also what every adult worries we're doing behind closed doors.

But actually research shows that not many young people are sexting (gasp) - even though lots of us have been asked.

Netsafe has some amaaaazing stuff if you have questions about what sexting is, what the risks are, and what to do if you've shared pics or been exposed to unwanted sexting. You can also go to them with all your sexting questions - like if someone’s threatening you that they're going to share something you sent them. #wegotyou.

We've probably ALL heard stories about photos being shared without someone's permission -  and might even be guilty of sharing something that's come past our way in the past.

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Luckily we can all cross our hearts that we will NEVER DO THIS AGAIN,  because sharing things like that is awful, harmful and against the frikken law.

Plus we are going to have each-others back out there so #weswearwewontshare.

When people talk about sexting they always talk about the risks - and we get it there are many risks involved. (Basically, once you share an image you have no control over what happens with it).

Also, have you noticed that when images are shared it is almost always the GIRLS who are shamed and blamed? NOT the d-bags who violated someone's privacy? FFFFFFFFF that.

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It’s the same old story “what a slut, why did you do that what were you thinking, you deserve everything that is happening rah rah rah”. Well to that we give a big #NOPE.

So let’s break down why someone might share a sexual image of themselves in a way that takes out all this negativity and judgement.

This isn't to say “go out and sext all you want if you feel these things”, because again the lack of control of sharing is terrifying, and it's girls who face the consequences much worse than guys.

Let's get REAL - here's why girls would send sexts

We just want some REAL TALK about why girls might take and send a pic of themselves in way that isn't HYSTERICAL SHOUTING about how wrong and stupid it is. Here's 4 legit reasons why girls might do it:

1.  Taking a picture of yourself might feel exciting and sexy while still feeling safe, because at the time you are taking it you are in total control of the pic. It might feel like an exciting way to explore and feel good in your body.

We checked the records and exploring or feeling good in your bod is NOT A CRIME or even A BAD THING.

2.You shared something with someone you love and trust because it felt exciting and good. AGAIN TRUSTING IS NOT A CRIME OR BAD THING.

3. Maybe you don’t get to see your boo IRL very much and this is a way to feel sexually connected.

4.   Maybe you feel really PROUD of yourself and the way you look.#RIGHTON

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There are other reasons you might do it (a big one is that you feel pressured – puh-lease never send or do a sexual thing because you feel like you have to).

There is a great app send this instead that gives you funny responses to send iif anyone’s ever trying that shit.

So when you look at these reasons someone might sext (feeling good, feeling sexy, trusting someone etc).

#NoMoreHaters 

It is REALLY WEIRD how much hate people (#girls) get when that sext is then shared WITHOUT PERMISSION.

Adults often react badly to these things because they are scared, they think they are being “protective” by shaming so that “it never happens again”.

Also adults, especially parents, often get very nervous about young people becoming sexual, it’s scary and out of their control so they try and clamp down on it happening “no dating till you are 25” etc, - whiiiiich doesn’t work.But this also often comes from a protective place.

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The problem is that girls, always girls, get the message that being sexual is SHAMEFUL and WRONG.

So when we get into sexual situations,  we're so busy worrying about whether we SHOULD or SHOULDN’T, that we forget to think about whether we really WANT to.

Pro tip everyone -  only ever do something sexy if you really WANT to!!

When a girl has her sexts shared, our first instinct is often to gang up on the victim as WELL because we've learnt that it's shameful and wrong for girls to be sexual from the adults in our lives, and society in general.

We also often start acting in a pack to stay safe, distancing ourselves from the victim and keeping away. Those urges are there to protect you, but they just end up in the victim being punished over and over. Eugh. 

#BeAForce

We KNOW it's hard, but we've gotta fight against those urges to gang up against the victim if anything's gonna change.

Stand up to that bulling by #EMPATHISING with the victims! EMPOWER yourselves with knowledge about why it’s wrong and #EMBRACING each other to build a strong community of girls who say NO to VICTIM BLAMING and SLUT SHAMING. #beaforce #nope

If you want some specific tips about how to support a friend after their sexts are shared, check out what some of our Embassadors had to say during our #13ReasonsWhy series on sexting.

You can also read more about girls who've had their sexts shared and how to get help here. You guys rule x 

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