I recently became friends with a new classmate. I really like them, but they constantly ask me to send dirty (nude) pictures. I did send one and now I feel really guilty. Is it OK to send a picture of myself in my bra and underwear? How can I get my friend to stop asking for these pictures?

Great question! For starters, if your friend or partner is worthy of your friendship, then they shouldn’t be pressuring you into doing something you don’t feel comfortable doing. If you tell your friend or your partner, “No, I am not comfortable doing that.” then you shouldn’t have to tell them again. A good friend or partner will accept and respect your response. They shouldn’t make you feel bad for saying “No” either! No one owns your body. You and only you can make decisions about who sees your body (if anyone at all), what they see of your body, and when they see parts of your body. If your friend or partner can’t support you in your decisions about your own body, then they simply aren’t worth being your friend.

Remember, it’s never a great idea to share photos that you wouldn’t want your parents or grandparents to see. For some teens, this might include photos of them shirtless with boxers or in a bra or panties. Even if you think you know who and where you’re sending your photos, they might end up in the wrong hands. Once your pictures have been sent (even through text messages or Snapchat) there is no way to get them back. It’s important to mention, that sending inappropriate pictures through text messages or social media may be illegal in some states. Rule of thumb, listen to your gut, if you think it’s a bad idea and one that makes your uncomfortable, say no. Your true friends will stay true no matter what you say.

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