6 Sexts You Should Never Send, According to a Therapist


There's perhaps no form of communication more confusing than the sext. When participating in a sext conversation, there are many factors to consider, including the in-person relationship you and your sext partner have developed, the boundaries you've set, and the things that turn them on. You've also got to remember that messages sent via text are easily misinterpreted, thus turning your casual flirt session into a relationship ruiner. But fear not. Here, we chatted with a therapist, so you know the sexts to always avoid.

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A sext outside your and your partner's boundaries.

Like other types of communication and sex acts, sexting comes down to consent, says David Tzall, PsyD, a licensed psychologist based in Brooklyn. "No sext is off limits or inappropriate if both people agree and consent to what the boundaries are."

When starting a relationship where sexting might be on the table, establish guidelines around your digital boundaries. "These parameters are based on the length of the relationship, connection, and threshold of suggestive and sexual language," says Tzall. "A sext that is sent four weeks into a relationship can look vastly different from a relationship that is six years in." You can update your parameters as needed as your relationship progresses.

A sext that comes on too strong, too early.

You probably don't want to launch your sexting journey with a new partner with the raunchiest thing you can drum up. "Coming out of the gate with the most over-the-top text is never a good idea," says Tzall. "The more you and your partner get comfortable with sexting, the more it will be enjoyable for both parties."

In fact, you may not want to start with anything innately sexual at all. "Writing 'I can't wait to see you tonight,' 'I am feeling so turned on,' or 'I want to put my arms around you when I get home' can fit in the realm of sexting," Tzall explains. Messages like those can help you grow your connection without going overboard.

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A sext that's violent or aggressive.

While you may engage in certain consensual "aggressive" behaviors in the bedroom, talking about them via text leaves room for misinterpretation.

"Violent or demeaning and aggressive messages are not likely to be sexy," says Tzall. "They may be more provocative and give the person a feeling that they have to worry or feel unsafe, and it is difficult to feel turned [on] when you're feeling unsafe." Proceed with caution, even if you've established precedent in the bedroom.

A sext about acts you haven't discussed.

Again, consent is key, so you should avoid sexting about novel ideas you haven't engaged in or discussed in person. "Sexting is all about comfort and safety, and when it starts to veer into territory where a person feels judgment or pressure, it can likely damage the couple," says Tzall.

On a similar note, you should also skip sexts about acts your partner has expressed disinterest in. "If one partner keeps suggesting a threesome after the other partner has said no numerous times, it can lead to the other individual feeling disrespected," Tzall says.

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A sext that could be misinterpreted.

You've probably heard the advice to avoid arguing with your partner via text because of the fact that they can easily be misread. That same caution should apply to sexts.

"Sexts without a lot of context can hurt a relationship because the receiver may not take the message as it is intended," says Tzall. "It's easy to misread or interpret communication, especially a sext, and if a person takes it the wrong way, it damages their ability to trust or communicate with one another." Keep your sexts clear, concise, and consensual to avoid trouble.

A nude photo.

Ah, the infamous dick pic. This is another sext you should never send unless it's specifically requested. "It may be more arousing to the man that is sending the material, but it may not be to the person receiving it," says Tzall. "It is a way for the man to have some type of power over the other person. The arousal comes from sending such shocking imagery and the other person getting flustered or embarrassed." The same can be said for other nude photos sent from men or women.

Instead, send a shot of your body and your face, Tzall says. It's much more likely to be well-received and elicit a smile instead of a shock.