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Magazine reporter questions Louisa teens about sexting to find out why they do it

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LOUISA COUNTY, Va. — It was late on a school night, so Jennifer’s kids were already asleep when she got a phone call from a friend of her 15-year-old daughter, Jasmine. “Jasmine is on a Web page and she’s naked.”

Jennifer woke Jasmine, and throughout the night, the two of them kept getting texts from Jasmine’s friends with screenshots of the Instagram account.

It looked like a porn site—shot after shot of naked girls—only these were real teens, not grown women in pigtails. Jennifer recognized some of them from Jasmine’s high school. And there, in the first row, was her daughter, “just standing there, with her arms down by her sides,” Jennifer told me.

“There were all these girls with their butts cocked, making pouty lips, pushing their boobs up, doing porny shots, and you’re thinking, Where did they pick this up? And then there was Jasmine in a fuzzy picture looking awkward.”

(The names of all the kids and parents in this story have been changed to protect their privacy.)

You couldn’t easily identify her, because the picture was pretty dark, but the connection had been made anyway.

“OMG no f‑ing way that’s Jasmine,” someone had commented under her picture.

Click to continue reading Hanna Rosen’s expose on sexting in Central Virginia on TheAtlantic.com.

The excerpt above was published, unedited, with the permission of the Atlantic Monthly.

In August, CBS 6 reporter Chelsea Rarrick visited Louisa to report on what was being done to address concerns about sexting.

5 comments

  • SAM

    Easy fix – take cell phones away! or if that’s not an option – block all texting and make it a phone only for emergency calls. We grew up without cell phones – why can’t they!

  • Penelope

    Parents who name their kids stripper names are usually not mature enough to make their own decisions. So they turn the house and all the electronics over to the kids so they can make mistakes. Then the parents are surprised. Not my darling Jasmine!!

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