Sexting isn’t for everyone, but some couples do find it useful to increase intimacy when they can’t be together physically like in long-distance relationships or while working away. However, it’s also a favorite of more casual pairings like people who meet on dating apps and are just feeling kinda horny. While many people are totally put off by the idea, those that give into a little digital get-down tend to have one thing in common: they like drinking alcohol.
Research published recently in Computers in Human Behavior found a link between alcohol and sexting, particularly among college students.
University of Tennessee at Knoxville’s Autumn Rae Florimbio, who authored the study, said she was interested in determining “how our attitudes influence our expectations of events as well as our behavior” and since we know alcohol use does tend to influence our sexual behaviors, she wanted to see if that carried over to sexting as well. Turns out, it does.
After surveying 534 undergraduate students about their sex drives, their sexting behavior (if any), and their alcohol usage, researchers found that alcohol use is positively related to sexting. Roughly 50% of students admitted to sending a sext while about 2/5ths of students said they’d requested a sext. Incidentally, most of those students also admitted to drinking alcohol more frequently—the higher the alcohol usage, the higher the frequency of sexting.
As Florimbio explained to PsyPost, the results aren’t completely foolproof. “There are some limitations to consider, with the first being we conducted this study in college students, so our findings could potentially look different in another sample. Also, we collected data at a single time point and therefore cannot make causal conclusions about the relationships between variables in our study.”
She hopes to study “alcohol use, expectancies, and sexting behaviors with multiple time points” more in the future to better understand these results, but the preliminary study does seem to speak for itself.