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Journal Article

Citation

Klettke B, Hallford DJ, Clancy E, Mellor DJ, Toumbourou JW. Cyberpsychol. Behav. Soc. Netw. 2019; 22(4): 237-242.

Affiliation

School of Psychology, Deakin University, Geelong, Victoria, Australia.

Copyright

(Copyright © 2019, Mary Ann Liebert Publishers)

DOI

10.1089/cyber.2018.0291

PMID

30855187

Abstract

Sexting (e.g., conveying nude electronic images) is now common among young adults. Despite leading to negative consequences for some (e.g., harassment and unwanted dissemination), findings regarding sexting behaviors and mental health variables have been mixed. We recruited a convenience sample of young adults (N = 444, M age = 20, SD = 1) to test the hypothesis that sexting might be associated with poorer mental health. Our results showed no association between receiving or sending sexts overall. However, receiving unwanted sexts, or sexting under coercion, was associated with higher depression, anxiety, and stress symptoms, and lower self-esteem, and these two sexting experiences were independent predictors of psychological distress. The relationship between these sexting behaviors with poor mental health was moderated by gender, with poorer outcomes for males receiving unwanted sexts. These findings indicate a possible moderating factor in sexting and mental health.


Language: en

Keywords

DASS; self-esteem; sexting; sexting coercion; sexual violence; unwanted but consensual

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