Sex With An Ex Negatively Impacts Women But Benefits Men, Says Study
We get so used to a person when we are dating them—the cute thing he does when he kisses your lips, the way he smells, the way he tastes, how he tucks his toes under your feet as you cuddle the night away. You are used to the way you sex it up. You’re so habituated to his moves and he knows exactly at what point you will moan. When it gets over, you have to pack all those memories in a bag and walk out, convinced that you have to move on. But it isn’t uncommon for ex-lovers to rekindle the fire because it is difficult to let go. Is sex with an ex advisable though?
A new study published in the journal Evolutionary Psychology finds that sex with an ex fares well for men than for women. The research examines the motivation and consequences of post-breakup sex. “I became interested in breakup sex research because I find it fascinating that people still go back to their exes. We live in a society where people can be on dozens of dating apps at once, swiping left and right on new partners at any time of day, yet people still contact their exes,” said Jimmy Moran, PhD candidate at Tulane University and lead author of the new study.
“So it is a fruitful area of research. It turns out the term breakup sex had been extensively talked about in popular media, but not scientifically. Although research on ex-sex had been studied before our project, breakup sex looks at the specific period of ex-sex, right after a breakup. Mainly, because breakups can be so distressing, compared to having sex with an ex from 6 months or 1 year ago, there are different emotional components with breakup sex,” Moran explained.
The researchers asked the participants who had post-breakup sex to disclose how they felt about the relationship before and after the canoodling. They were also asked how they felt about themselves. Turns out there is no significant difference between men and women when it comes to the relationship quality before and after sex. Several people reported having had sex since they were still in love or to show them what they are missing out on.
To elaborate on the motivations behind post-breakup sex, researchers asked the participants why a person would do that. “Compared to women, men were be more likely to indicate engaging in breakup sex for hedonistic or ambivalent reasons, such as because they missed sexual activity, because they were bored,” Psypost reports.
Moran told Psypost that men and women feel differently about post-breakup sex and also had different motivations to indulge in the same. “Due to its popularity in the media, individuals may believe that breakup sex is something they should participate in. However, the present results suggest otherwise. Deciding to engage in breakup sex involves a complicated stage in one’s relationship and may disproportionately benefit men,” the researchers wrote in their study.
Psypost reports that “men tended to be more receptive to breakup sex compared to women regardless of their partner’s attractiveness or who initiated the breakup.” It further elaborates, “In addition, women were more likely than men to report feeling worse after engaging in breakup sex.”
So while your ex is texting you to catch up and “chill” maybe he is just bored and misses the warmth. According to the research, the guy will not feel regretful but you might. Honestly, I would have felt bad about it, like there’d be this negative feeling in my gut. So don’t assume that you both are in the same boat. You may be but chances are, it’s gonna make you feel worse that it doesn’t affect him so. Also, why do you want negative feelings from sex? Not worth it!
There are limitations to this study. For instance, it doesn’t study the long-term effects of sleeping with an ex. Moran said, “Now that we understand how men and women differ on engagement in breakup sex, we should begin to explore how breakup sex impacts the individual longer-term,” Moran said. “Do those who engage in breakup sex end up having a more challenging time finding their next partner? Additionally, it might be beneficial to understand how others outside of the relationship perceive couples who engage in breakup sex. Does it cause potential suitors not to be interested? “There are plenty of studies that need to be conducted. I hope other relationship and sex researchers become interested in understanding this post-breakup behaviour!”