With the advent of cell phones and the internet, communication has gone to a higher level. However, there are problems that come with it when not used properly. One of the problems is “sexting”.

What is sexting?

Sexting is the sending of provocative images or pictures over the cell phones. Teenagers are the ones who are in danger of falling into this trap. Technology provides an easy way for teenagers or youths to experiment with matters that are sexual in nature.

What is the danger?

When children are not taught to use the cell phone or internet properly, they become victims to sexting or sexual predators respectively. Teenagers are especially in danger of being targeted by sexual predators. The flip side of the internet is that sexual predators can prey on not only teenagers but also young children.

Predators disguised themselves as another person, even as a young person to get close to the victim. Once the predators have gained the trust of the victim, a meeting is arranged that is actually a sexual encounter. It is not uncommon to hear of victims stripping in front of their personal webcams to receive gifts or incentives from the predators. It is worrying that even minors are trading or exchanging nude photos among themselves and think nothing of it.

The parent’s role

Parents need to get more involved in their children’s lives. They need to examine their relationship with their children. Strive to build strong bonds with your children and especially teenagers. Build a strong support system so that your children will turn to you about their problems or issues that are sexual in nature.

Teach the children about proper boundaries and what they can share with their friends. Teach them that the sharing of nude pictures with their girlfriends or boyfriends is wrong. Let them have a strong self-worth so that they are not easily coerced into doing something that is not proper or wrong. In addition, inform them about the consequences of their actions rather then just telling them what not to do.

Parents need to start the above when their children start to use the internet or have their own cell phones. Prevention is always better than cure as the consequences are always much harder to deal with later when a problem has occurred.