Tuesday 4 August 2009

Lights, Camera, Action

There’s now concern that young girls send photos of themselves via their mobiles (disrobed as it were) to their boyfriends. So called sexting. When the relationship breaks up, the boyfriend shares these pictures with all and sundry. The consequences can be tragic and the dangers are obvious.

But this is not a new phenomenon.

When I was engaged at the tender age of 16, my boyfriend liked to take photographs. He did a lot of hunting and shooting and therefore spent a lot of time in the forests surrounding Helsinki. Photography was part of this hobby.

He also liked to take photos of me.

Needless to say when the Englishman came into my life – see posts here – I was very keen to get the negatives and the photos back. But he wouldn’t do it. He gave me the prints, which I promptly destroyed, but in spite of several attempts at being nice to him (not in that way – shame on you, reader) and pleading with him, he maintained that as the injured party in the break-up, he was entitled to the negatives.

Even now, nearly thirty years later, I still regret having been so stupid as to allow this.

I have no evidence that he ever shared the photos with anyone. Nor do I believe he did. But just the knowledge that he still has access to them makes me shudder. I've not spoken with him for all this time, and I am not about to. So what am I to do? Just continue ignoring the issue and hope I never starred as ‘Reader’s wife’, or that I never will. I hope that the quality of photography is such now, that the pictures wouldn't be usable. Or, that sanity prevailed with my ex and he did indeed keep them locked up as he promised and has by now destroyed them.


Wildernesschic said...

Helena let them go...
Worst case scenario they re surface. How old were you at the time ? I bet you would look amazing in them.
Sp stop punishing yourself :) great piece again though

PV Lundqvist said...

What I hear in this post is how a man could not really let you go, and, because you wanted all trace removed, how you were truly over him.

You got the better of the deal.

Unknown said...

You're both right. I only think of the pics when something like the sexting is on the news. Helenaxx

Tim Atkinson said...

Having seen this first-hand (as-it-were, being a secondary school teacher for longer than I care to remember!) I can certainly vouch for the reality of this problem. No 'media hype' here: it happens, and often. And having dealt with some of the fall-out, I can confirm that - in many cases - the boy's motives are rather dubious. But in almost all the girl gives her utmost trust - a trust then callously abused.

Unknown said...

This is exactly what happened to me all those years ago, Dotterel. The point is, it's not a new problem. New technology makes it perhaps easier and faster, which in turn possibly compounds the problem. But it certainly isn't a new invention. Unfortunately, girls are far more dewy eyed when he comes to love. Strange when the female of the species can also be so deadly?

Cheryl said...

The first two commenters have really good points. But I can understand your feelings. There are things I wish I'd been wiser about when I was younger, too. But, oh well, what's done is done.

This kind of thing scares me, another symptom of how girls are taught to use their sexuality as a means of gaining approval.