A mother whose teenage daughter was left distraught and emotionally traumatised by sexting has spoken out in a bid to help other families.
Roz Carver told The Telegraph that she had assumed her 15-year-old daughter would be “too sensible” to get involved in sending sexually explicit images to friends.
But she was pressured into sending a semi-naked image of herself to a boy she liked, via the WhatsApp messaging service.
Although the incident has blown over, Roz said that it was a lesson for her about the impact pornography has had on peer pressure.
In days, she’d gone from a happy, confident teenager to a broken wreck.
Roz told how when she got a message from her daughter’s head teacher about an “incident”, she had no idea it would involve her daughter sexting.
Kate explained that a boy she liked, Seb, had asked her to send him ‘secret pics’, and although she resisted for a while she gave in after hearing a friend had been happy to do the same.
Seb had forwarded Kate’s picture – of her without any clothes on from the waist up – to several friends who had in turn sent it on to others.
“Kate’s good friends supported her – it turned out that Seb had lied about her friend sexting him – but she was the talk of the school.
“Whatever the head said to Seb, it didn’t make any difference. Everyone had already seen the image, boys made lewd comments about my daughter’s figure, and girls whispered about her”, Roz wrote.
She added: “After a few days, Kate was a husk; she had barely slept, and was still breaking down in tears.
“By the following Monday, she didn’t want to go to school at all – I had to virtually push her up the drive as she sobbed – then I went to work, locked myself in the loo, and sobbed too.
“In days, she’d gone from a happy, confident teenager to a broken wreck.”
Kate eventually recovered but Roz said the experience has had long-lasting effects on her.
“I hadn’t considered the level of pressure from teenage lads who grow up watching porn and think it’s normal to expect a 15- year-old girl to send them naked photos. At that age, I’d only just had my first kiss.”
Roz concluded: “I don’t want other teenagers to go through what Kate experienced.
“It doesn’t sound impossible to block underage account holders from texting certain images. I just wish, for my daughter’s sake, that it had happened sooner.”[Names have been changed by The Telegraph.]