It can be hard to keep the fire burning in a long-distance relationship, and it's equally difficult to find ways to connect when you're spending time apart. There are plenty of ways to spice things up from afar, and keep your relationship flirty — even if you can't hang out face-to-face. And sexting your partner is one of the best ways to go about it. If you're shy, you might even find that it feels way more comfortable to send sexy messages than to say things out loud. And if you're having trouble getting started, you can always begin by playing a sexting game with your partner.
"[Sexting] builds anticipation and desire," Shavonne Jones, LCSW, a licensed clinical social worker, tells Bustle. When there's distance between you, sexting can really keep the connection going, she says.
In fact, a 2019 survey of 8,000 Americans conducted by Kinsey Institute researchers found that using technology to enhance sexuality — sexting, phone sex, etc. — connected participants to their partners both sexually and emotionally.
With that in mind, here are 17 example sexting ideas to use with your partner when you're long-distance or temporarily apart.
1. Would You Rather?
You’re probably already familiar with this classic game. You can put a sexy twist on it by making all of the questions sex-related. For example, “would you rather have me kiss your neck or your ear?” You can keep the questions relatively tame at the beginning, especially if your partner’s shy. Then slowly work up to making them more graphic. This game is also a great way to get to know your partner and their sexual likes and dislikes!
2. Remember When?
If you had a particularly steamy sex session in person, you can rehash all of the details together over text. Again, start simple if your partner is shy. “Remember when I was sitting in your living room and you came in and gave me that little smile?” If your partner doesn’t respond right away, keep going. “And then remember when I told you to come over and sit next to me?” If you’re still not getting a bite, ask, “what happened next?” Trust me, your partner won’t mind that you’re asking them to “remember” something that just happened!
3. Choose Your Own Adventure
This is a really adaptable game that’s similar to Would You Rather. Text your partner a series of options that you could do in that moment, and ask them to pick which one they would like best. For example, you could send, “I’m sitting here at home alone, thinking of you. I could either scroll through some of the pictures you sent me, take a shower, or try to distract myself. What should I do?” Once they’ve made their decision, send them a few more options that would unfold after the first step. For example, “Look at the pictures of you, OK! I could either stay here in the living room, go into the bedroom, or go out onto the balcony. What should I do?”
4. Plan Our Next Adventure
This is a small but exciting variation of Choose Your Own Adventure. In this version, have all of your options be things that the two of you could do the next time you see each other. For example, “You’re going to get in at nine at night. We could either get really dressed up and go out to dinner, take a quick shower together, or go straight into the bedroom. What do you pick?” You can either take turns giving options and making decisions, or have your partner plan out the entire date. Make sure to follow through the next time you see each other!
5. The Treasure Hunt
The next time you’re at your partner’s house, leave something sexy behind, like a pair of underwear you wore when you were together, a new lingerie set they’ve never seen you in, or even a sex toy. Once you’re gone, text your partner that you left something special for them to find. You can give your partner clues if you feel nice, or let them figure it out on their own.
6. Sexting Co-Authors
This is a good game to play with partners who might feel a bit shy about discussing your personal sex life over text. Tell your partner you want to write a story together, where you take turns coming up with sentences. You can start the story off innocently enough, but slowly start to make it more sexual. You can play this game for weeks, or even months!
7. Book Club
If you or your partner are too shy to write your own erotica (or have writer’s block in the moment), you can read other people’s erotica instead. When you know your partner has some free time, send a link to an erotica website. Ask your partner to read it at the same time you’re reading it. Copy and paste the specific sentences that you really like, or discuss your favorite scenes. You can also do this with porn.
8. Guess What I’m Wearing
Text your partner and ask them to guess something about your clothing. You can ask them to guess the specific underwear you’re wearing or the color. If they guess correctly, send them a picture of you wearing the item. (You can show just a snippet of the fabric if you don’t want to get too graphic.)
9. King For A Day
In this game, one person gets to be King For A Day, and tell the other person exactly what to do. If you and your partner like a bit of the Domination/submission dynamic, you can have one partner choose every single daily activity and decision. Take turns the next day if you want.
10. Sext Brainstorming
Whenever you stumble across an intriguing-sounding sex tip online, like an idea for a new sex position or an oral sex technique, send the link over to your partner. Send a little message like, “thinking about the two of us doing this together” or, “would you want to try this?” This is a great game for people who don’t feel that creative on their own.
11. Sext Shopping
Similarly, you can also send your partner links to sex-related items you’d like to buy, like lingerie, sex toys, or accessories. You can send a cheeky message like, “just a little hint for my upcoming birthday.” Or try sending over a couple of links, and sending the message, “I got you one of these things. You’ll have to wait and see which one I picked.”
12. The Sex Bucket List
Together, come up with specific sexual experiences that you want to share together. You can add things like, “have sex while camping,” “have multiple orgasms,” or “have a threesome.” Create a shared Google Document, and set it to notify the other person when one of you makes a change.
13. Orgasm Race
When you know your partner is home alone, send them a message asking if they would like to have a have a masturbation race. See who can get to the finish line first. No cheating!
14. Guessing Game
While you might not want to text each other full body shots, sending a seductive photo or two can make for a fun game, especially if it's tough to tell what you're looking at. Is that a close up of their shoulder? Is that your stomach, or the small of your back? Send these slightly blurry pics back and forth, and have a good time guessing.
15. Role Playing
Dream up a scenario that seems sexy (perhaps you're a cop, and they're under arrest?) and then try role playing. Take turns creating a steamy dialogue for the situation, and see if you can get a bit adventurous.
This is a fun way to live out a few fantasies, while also getting ideas for sexy games to play in person, as soon as you get the chance.
16. Truth Or Dare
Find a time when you're both home alone to play a game of truth or dare. Let the "truth" ease you in, as you share a few secrets and answer a few burning questions. And from there, venture into the "dares."
Truth questions can include things like "what's your favorite part of my body?" or "what's something you've always wanted to try in bed?" For dares, silly things are always fun, like "eat a piece of fruit in a seductive way." But they can also be incredibly steamy, especially if you say things like, "for the next 60 seconds, touch yourself the way you'd like to touch me."
17. Finish The Sentence
For this one, take turns describing your ideal evening in bed. But end every other sentence with an ellipses, and let your partner fill in the blank. Together you'll come up with a sexy (or completely hilarious) story.
With additional reporting by Carolyn Steber.
Shavonne Jones, LCSW, licensed clinical social worker