People who like sexting are more likely to be narcissists
A team of international researchers looked at the common personality traits of people who loved to sext. They found that those that were a fan of sexting were more likely to have two of the traits that make up the so-called Dark Triad - Machiavellianism and narcissism.
Narcissism is generally associated with having an inflated sense of self and a lack of empathy for other people, whereas Machiavellianism is associated with manipulating others and having a lack of morals. So, all in all, not great personality characteristics to have.
In the study, researchers completed surveys of more than 6000 people across 11 countries and looked at whether they took part in three different types of sexting - ‘experimental’, ‘risky’ and ‘aggravated’.
‘Experimental’ was your pretty standard consensual exchange of sexual content, whereas ‘risky’ looked at sexting alongside other behaviours, such as while drinking, taking drugs or sending sexts to strangers online.
‘Aggravated’, on the other hand, was the extremely not cool type, referring to sharing someone else’s sexts without their consent or coercing someone into sending sexts.
The study found that across all types of sexting, people who enjoyed sending nudes and the like scored higher on measures of narcissism and Machiavellianism, meaning they were more likely to have traits like having a big ego or being cunning and manipulative. ‘Risky’ and ‘Aggravated’ sexters also were more likely to score higher on the third Dark Triad trait of psychopathy, which is characterised by antisocial behaviour and selfishness.
The study also found some gender-based differences, with men “more likely to be involved in risky sexting and in both forms of aggravated sexting”, according to the researchers. They were also more likely to be involved in sexting under pressure, such as from a partner.
In good news (I guess?), the study didn’t find a substantial correlation between sexting and the third Dark Triad personality trait of psychopathy if you were just your standard ‘experimental’ sexter.
To which we say, send that nude! (If it’s consensual and you want to, of course…)