Many U.S. Adults Sext, and it May Even Help Some Relationships

A new survey finds more than eight in 10 adults admit to sending or receiving a sexually explicit text message—commonly known as “sexting”—and many say the practice leads to increased sexual satisfaction, particularly when couples are involved.

“Most people have focused on the dangers of sexting and how it can harm a relationship,” said study lead author Emily Stasko, a doctoral candidate in the department of psychology at Drexel University in Philadelphia. “But context matters. Sexting is definitely something that many adults are doing. It’s not going away, and the findings indicate that it can actually be good for relationships and sexual satisfaction.”

The study team conducted an online survey among 870 Americans between the ages of 18 and 82. The poll found that about three-quarters of those who sext do so with a committed partner. And roughly the same percentage sexts while in the comfort of their home. Just 12 percent said they used this form of communication to cheat on someone.

Men were more likely to think of it as a “fun” and “carefree” experience, and more likely to view the behavior as an expected part of their relationship. Women, on the other hand, appeared to be slightly more likely to want to send texts than to receive them, the researchers said.

But greater sexting frequency was linked to greater sexual satisfaction among both men and women, particularly when sexters were in a relationship, the survey found.

Jeffrey Hall, an assistant professor in the department of communication studies at the University of Kansas in Lawrence, added, “As mobile devices continue the steady march toward achieving the status of fully domestic technologies—like the television and the home computer—it should come as no surprise that we treat them as a means to carry on relationship business as usual, including talking about sex.” (HealthDay)

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