Does your minor child own a cell phone? If the answer is yes, he or she has probably been exposed to “sexting” or sexual text messages.
A new study shows 37% of children who own cell phones are exposed to sexting by age 13. The data for the study came from a parenting app called Jiminy that allows parents to regulate the content their children see on the Internet.
The company found that 14.8% of children who own a smartphone had sent or received a sexual text message by age 10 and more than 37% had sent or received sexting messages by age 13.
Jiminy warns parents that their children are far more open to sexual exploration online, which puts them at risk of being approached by sexual predators.
“Sexting is quickly becoming a normative form of sexual exploration among preteens and teens,” the study finds. “As such, parents would expect the real possibility that their children may be approached by others, known or unknown, or approach others in a sexually explicit manner.”