Can You Have Sex with Your Ex?

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Most people suggest you cut off your ex immediately after a breakup, but severing ties with someone you may still have feelings for can be tough. After letting some time pass, the possibility of maintaining a friendship can work for some people. Keeping the communication lines open and occasionally spending time with the your former flame can also introduce the idea of having sex with your ex. It may be inviting to hookup with someone you already know, someone who still cares about you, and someone who already knows exactly what you like. However, having sex with an ex is tricky. It can be done, of course, but proceed with caution.

Here are some ways to make having sex with your ex less tricky:

Let time pass. There needs to be a sufficient amount of time between breakup and reconnecting to make this work. Without many months of healing time, there are still too many fresh emotions and feelings involved, which will likely lead to confusion. If you’re still pining over your ex-flame and reminiscing about all the good times the two of you had together, or you’re still rehashing old arguments in your head, you’re probably not mentally or emotionally ready to give sex with your ex a shot.

Be honest with yourself. Are you able to separate sex from the ties that used to bind you two? It's really important to be honest with yourself about why you're connecting with your ex and if it'll be a healthy choice for yourself. If you can unequivocally say yes it'll just be sex and it won't lead to confusion, then enjoy. However, if you have high expectations and you think a romp in the bedroom will lead to a rekindling of your relationship, it’s best to hold off on having sex with your ex.

Don't cuddle up or stay over. Keep time together relegated to just the sex, and not a cuddle session or an overnight stay. Being in your ex's arms will have your body making dopamine and oxytocin, which are bonding hormones. Avoid the temptation to curl up with them afterwards to prevent potential hurt feelings for one or both of you. If you treat the situation as strictly sex - nothing more and nothing less - it’ll be easier to keep them as an occasional lover in your mind.

Don’t go out on dates. Dates are for people who are in a relationship or at least dating, and neither of those options apply when it comes to hooking up with an ex. Now that your long term relationship is over and you’re interested in engaging in something that’s purely physical, dinners at romantic restaurants, brunches after a night of passionate sex, or movie dates should be avoided. Unless you truly want to reconcile with your former partner, try not to slip back into doing the things that people in relationships do.

Always play it safe. Now that the relationship is over, protecting yourself by using condoms whenever you and your ex have sex is a must. You can’t be entirely sure that you’re the only person they’re sleeping with, nor do they have to tell you about the other people they may be in contact with unless you have a strict agreement on that. Never sacrifice your health for a night of earth-shattering sex.

Keep your options open. Continue to go out on dates and meet people who are more aligned with what you want in a partner. As you’re getting your needs met by having nostalgic sex with your ex, there’s no harm in leaving the door open to meeting someone new.  

Everyone has had sex with an ex at some point in their life, so no matter how taboo it may seem, don’t feel badly if you’re considering going through with it. Maybe all you need is one more night of passion with them to help you finally close the door and move on to better things.

RelationshipsAntonia HallSex, ex