Sexting Foolishness

iTHINK

January 22, 2010|Kyle Langan

With terms like ” Facebook’‘ and ”sexting” and stories about young adults sending inappropriate photos to one another, it is clear that technology has infiltrated how we communicate. Because technology is so prevalent, it can be inferred it has warped the minds of young society. Since when, to be accepted, has it been considered cool to degrade and expose oneself?

During adolescence and young adulthood, a common need to be accepted and liked is crucial. Now, courtesy of Facebook and other social networking sites, teens are capable of posting pictures and blogs about themselves that may hinder their ability to find a job down the road.

Cell phone usage has become even more dangerous since the invention of the camera phone, allowing adolescents to send racy images with sexual messages to one another.

I have heard these types of stories firsthand. They occur because teens think peers will like them better if there is tangible documentation of inappropriate behaviors.

Everyone likes attention, and teenagers thrive on the euphoric feeling when someone wants to see more of them or likes them better if there are pictures of them chugging beer or in the nude. As soon as the photo is out, they are considered ”fun” and ”cool.” Young people like to hold onto the good feeling of acceptance because it’s a sure thing.

Repercussions of such actions are not the first thing that pops into a younger person’s mind before he acts; it is more about pleasing other people, which is the problem. When the picture is posted or the message is sent, teenagers do not think about what will happen if they are caught or how it will affect them later when they try to find a job; they only think about how much more attention will be paid to them. There is an it-won’t-happen-to-me mindset.

Part of the problem is a fear of growing up. Therefore, if there is any way to act immaturely or escape that feeling of uncertainty, people will do it. Society has become so attuned to preserving youth, it seems almost hypocritical to reprimand young people for acting immaturely, when being treated immaturely is the only treatment they have known. In no way are these actions excusable. However, the irony of the never-ending cycle is blatant.

It comes down to choices we, as young adults, make. There comes a point in everyone’s life when you have to look at yourself in the mirror and ask what will the future be like. Move up in the professional world and mature? Or live out of your parents’ basement and try to relive the glory days?

We have to make responsible choices that allow us to successfully transition into adulthood. We can decide to make choices that support our self-indulgent, Peter Pan complex and tarnish our reputation, but we are putting at risk the ability to obtain a worthwhile job and pursue a worthwhile future. If the latter choice is appealing, you must be willing to live with the choices you make, knowing that whatever comes down the road is no one’s fault but your own.

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