DEAR KELLY: Recently my boyfriend asked me to Snapchat a picture of just me in my bra and underwear. He said if I Snapchatted it wouldn't stay on his phone long and no one would see it.
I did it but said he had to do the same because it seemed fair. We both did it, then he started saying some pretty sexual things to me that at first were OK and I wrote back some stuff, but when I had to go he seemed mad at me for stopping.
Later on that week he texted me that he couldn't stop looking at my picture because I looked so hot in my bra and panties. I asked him what he was talking about because I only did it once and it was supposed to have gone off his phone.
He admitted he took a screen shot of my picture before it went off and now he has it. He also took screen shots of all the things we were texting that were pretty sexual and said he reads them all the time and that it makes him want to have sex with me.
Kelly, we have never had sex and I don't think I'm ready. We are only freshmen in high school, and I thought it was safe to talk sex with him but not actually have to do it. I feel like he can't just talk to me without it being about sex or something sexual.
I think he knows I don't want to have sex, but he keeps asking me to Snapchat him another picture. I'm kind of scared because I know he is screen- saving the shots and looking at them a lot.
What do I say or do when he keeps asking me to send more pictures or wants to talk sexually? I feel uncomfortable with all of this, but don't know what to do.
DEAR HEIDI: Stop and think about that uncomfortable feeling you have when your boyfriend "sexts" you or asks for more pictures. Take notice of what it feels like, how unsettling it is and and of other times you may have felt the same.
That uncomfortable feeling you are experiencing is a red flag. A red flag is used as a warning of danger ahead. It is used to alert people to be cautious and careful because a problem or hazard could be coming.
At raceways, a red flag means all drivers must stop immediately because something has happened and it's too dangerous to drive. At the beach, a red flag means the water is really rough and it is dangerous to go swimming. We use this term with people to say "Look at the warning signs and be aware that you'd better think twice about your choices because they could be unsafe."
I hear you loud and clear that you are not ready to have sex, but your boyfriend does not. He said he knows you are not ready but he is putting tremendous pressure on you to move ahead and take steps closer to having sex.
If he knows you are not ready and respects that decision, then why would he continue to remind you how bad he wants to have sex with you and try to get a measure on where you are with your decision to hold off? It seems like a game to him and he is trying to work you down until you eventually give in and just do it.
No more Snapchatting pictures to him. If you have only sent him one picture, that's one too many. The next time you are together in person, tell him you're uncomfortable knowing he has that picture on his phone.
Tell him to show you the picture, so you can delete it off his phone. Don't just send it to the deleted files where he can retrieve it, delete it for good so he can't get it back. If he refuses to to do it, end the relationship promptly because he has no concern or care for your feelings. Tell him you don't like his sexual texts and to please stop. If he sends one, don't respond and engage.
If you decide to stay in this relationship (don't!), remember the red flag. There are a lot of signs from your boyfriend that you should proceed ahead with great caution. He seems sneaky (screenshotting your picture without telling you before he did it), selfish (wanting more pictures of you), stressful (asking all the questions about when you will be ready instead of just accepting that you aren't) and unaware of your feelings (continuing to sext you even though it makes you uncomfortable).
The dangers ahead for you are not just emotional, but physical.
Listen to your gut. Act accordingly. Hold your ground. Value your principles. Respect yourself. Trust the red flags.