This is really sad.
18-year-old Jesse Logan did something all too common- she sent a naked picture of herself to her boyfriend. When they broke up, the boyfriend shared the pictures with others, and the harassment began. One thing led to another… until finally Jesse’s mom came home one day to find her hanging in her bedroom closet. The pressure was too much. Jesse took her own life (click here for the CNN video with an interview with her mother).
You’ve heard us talking about a trend known as “sexting” (many of you read our Youth Culture Window article on the subject), a stepping stone to teenagers using cell phones for posting/viewing naked pictures of themselves or others (yes, we wrote a Youth Culture Window article on that subject as well). That latter article revealed these facts:
- 20% of teenagers say they’ve sent (or posted) naked or semi-naked photos or videos of themselves, mostly to be “fun or flirtatious,” (33% of 20-26 year olds have done the same)
- 33% of teenage boys say they’ve seen nude or semi-nude images sent to someone else (about 25% of teenage girls have done the same)
- 39% of teenagers say they’ve sent suggestive text messages (59% of those ages 20-26 admit to it as well)
- 48% of teens have received sexually suggestive text messages (64% of young adults also have)
The story of Jesse is sobering because it reminds us that these numbers are kids. Each of these numbers represents a story… the story of a kid struggling to find themselves in a world that often applauds risque’ behavior.
Remember to pray for Jesse’s family.
As parents and youth workers, we should read articles about this story with our kids, perhaps even showing them that CNN video linked above. Then talk with them about choices and their consequences. This isn’t a time to lecture… but a time to let the article tell its story. It’s powerful by itself. David also provides us with further conversation helps in the bottom of his Youth Culture Window article on Mobile Porn.
(ht to Tom B. for the CNN story)