The word "sexting" probably brings up the mental image of someone sending eggplant emojis to initiate a late-night hookup. But it's more than that. I'f you've never sexted with your partner or you let the sexy text messages die a while ago, you're missing out. Learning to talk to your partner about sexting can open up your relationship to new sexual and non-sexual experiences.
According to a 2015 study in Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking, married couples sext but not nearly as much as those in newer relationships. According to the study, those in solid relationships tend to view sexting as something that people only do when they're insecure in their relationships. But simply wanting to create a deeper intimacy is a much better reason to pick up the phone and start sexting — and that's what couples should be focused on.
"In marriage, [sexting] is a continuation of an intimate relationship that stimulates bonding chemicals in your brain, and makes sex hotter sex when you have it," clinical sexologist Gloria Brame, Ph.D., told Shape.
If you're looking to try bringing sexting into your relationship, here is what you need to know about getting your partner to talk about doing the deed digitally.
According to Ravishly, the art of married sexting has 10 rules, including not sending texts at inappropriate times, absolutely no d*ck pics, and no sexting after 10:30 p.m. You should also be prepared that sexting with your long-term partner is going to be different than any sexting you may have done before. For one, taking a selfie with a pile of dirty laundry in the background is totally OK. For another, your sexts might come in the middle of asking your partner to pick up dinner on the way home, and that's OK too.
According to the aforementioned Shape article, when talking about sexting with your partner, you have to embrace the silliness of this new form of foreplay. You can start by stating the obvious: Maybe it's been a while since you got naked together, but you're hoping to again very soon. Then make sure you're timing the sext right (like, not during your partner's big meeting with their boss this afternoon) and focus on building tension. Finally, use your words to throw your partner a compliment and don't be afraid to send racy photos. They don't even have to be of yourself, but a photo of the tousled bed sheets and how you'd like to mess them even more later could be just what needs to be said.
If you're still not sure of how to bring up sexting to your partner, try using some example sexting ideas to get you started, and don't forget that the number one rule of sexting is to keep it fun. Don't pressure yourself or your partner, and definitely back off if one of you isn't feeling it. And don't forget to triple check who you're sending that text to before you click "send." Your baby brother and Zumba instructor don't want to hear what you'll be up to later, but your partner definitely wants to be involved.