Motives For Sexting Are Complicated, UA Researcher Says

Published: Wednesday, August 14, 2019 - 1:20pm
Updated: Wednesday, August 14, 2019 - 1:45pm

Sexting. People do it, but have you ever wondered why? The motives, it turns out are complicated, according to a University of Arizona researcher. 

First, what is sexting? It’s the sharing of sexually explicit images of oneself via text message, but why do people do it?

Morgan Johnstonbaugh is a UA sociology doctoral student. She asked more than 1,000 college students from seven universities why — there was a list of 23 possible reasons.

Johnstonbaugh said female respondents selected empowerment as one of the reasons. 

"So we see this isn’t just women being victimized or pressured… but they are in fact engaging in sexting to gain something for themselves, either gaining body confidence, we know that’s a big issue today as well as learning about and exploring their sexualities," Johnstonbaugh said. 

However, the study also found that women were more likely to say they sent a sexually explicit photo of themselves in order to keep the recipient from losing interest. 

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