Is Ex Sex Ever A Good Idea?
Breakups are a natural part of life, and come in all shapes and sizes, just like relationships. And, just like in relationships, not all aspects of a breakup are always black and white. One of the big questions that comes up time and time again is a simple one - is it OK to have sex with an ex?
The biggest thing to remember here is that, in a weird kind of way, a breakup is another facet of the relationship itself, and as such the exact details of the breakup will be as unique to each situation as the relationship itself was.
When it comes to ex sex, the most important aspect to take into account is how exactly the relationship ended. Was it mutual or one sided? Calm and accepting or explosive and painful?
These details can make all the difference, so let's look at how.
If It Wasn't A Mutual Choice
The ideal breakup is a rare thing; certainly real, but rare. Almost invariably, there will be one person being broken up with and one person 'doing' the breakup, and it's in these situations where sex with an ex is not a great idea.
For one partner, it might be an easy way to smooth out the transition back to single life whilst still getting the benefits of great sex, but for the other, it can make getting over the breakup much much harder or, even worse, can leave lingering promises of potentially getting back together.
In these situations a breakup needs to be as clean and clear cut as possible, and adding sex into the equation only muddies the waters.
If It Was A Joint Decision
On the other side of the equation, though, are those relationships that come to an end amicably and through the agreement of both partners.
In these cases, sex between the exes can seem a much safer idea, and indeed relatively it is, but there are still many warning signs to be on the lookout for. It's key to remember that the relationship ended for a reason, and in this case likely for one both parties agree upon, so if nights are being regularly shared it can be all too tempting to slip back into old habits and to be tempted by the promise of reconciliation, which is far from healthy in an environment where both people need to be looking to the future.
Of course, there's more to whether ex sex is a good idea than simply how the breakup went. First and foremost, one of the pros is the most obvious - 99% of the time you know it's sex that works for you. You've had time to learn your partner's body, what works for them and for the two of you, and so have they. This can be one of the hardest things to let go of when leaving a relationship: the idea of building up this level of sexual synchronicity can be exceptionally daunting and it can seem so much simpler and easier to, at least for the time being, slip back into what you know.
This is not necessarily a bad thing - if you're still on good terms and there's no risk of feelings getting hurt or anyone getting led on then there's no real reason not to enjoy some great sex, but caution is utterly essential.
So, Is It Worth It?
The biggest downside to ex sex is a simple one: it keeps you living in the past. After a relationship comes to its end, you need closure and, with time, to move on. If you’re still getting together with a recent ex, even on rare occasions it becomes harder and harder to let go and move on.
It may seem obvious but it bears reiterating - ex sex is a risky business. Emotions are at stake, as is the ability for both participants to move on with their lives. That being said, if the circumstances are right and the opportunity comes up, sometimes it really can just be some great sex with someone you have an established rhythm with. Just be careful.
The ViBlogger is a student at the University of Leeds, where he studies Astrophysics. When he's not writing for The Sextbook, he can usually be found in a Yorkshire field reenacting the 12th century.
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