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Is There Really Any Problem With Having Sex With Your Ex?

According to Goldman Sach’s Unofficial Guide to Being a Man, hooking up with an ex is “like a dog eating its own vomit”. Now, we’re definitely not endorsing the Goldman Sach’s ethos, but as uncouth as this little admonition might be, it’s pretty damn accurate.

The lads in the lab at the Wayne State University in Detroit went ahead and did a bit of research themselves. They came to the conclusion that sex with an ex no longer prevents you from moving on and may even make you happier in the long run. I know what you’re thinking, it sounds like just a bunch of blokes who wanted an excuse to crack on with their old flames but, it’s a tad more scientific.

The experiment involved analysing the responses from 113 freshly-broken-up individuals who participated in “longitudinal methods to test whether pursuing sex with an ex-partner hinders breakup recovery”. In layman’s terms, the group was basically asked to answer a series of online survey questions.

Questions included:

  • Have you had any physical contact with your former partner?
  • How have you felt since the break-up?
  • How emotionally attached do you feel?
  • Can you report any actual or attempted sexual encounters with your ex-partners?

Data was collected over a period of two months, with another follow up two months after completion. The researchers then analysed the results and concluded that ex-sex will not set back a person’s emotional recovery following a break-up. Subsequently, they also determined that those who still had feelings were more likely to pursue more sexual encounters with an ex – duh – and researchers stated the encounter often left the person feeling more positive about their everyday lives.

‘This research suggests that societal hand-wringing regarding trying to have sex with an ex may not be warranted,” said Stephanie Spielmann of Wayne University. “The fact that sex with an ex is found to be most eagerly pursued by those having difficulty moving on, suggests that we should perhaps instead more critically evaluate people’s motivations behind pursuing sex with an ex.”

So, what do you take from all of this?

Well, first of all, don’t dive back in and call that old high school girlfriend just yet. Every breakup has unique circumstances and no one answer is the right one. But just know, if you do end up having a raunchy romp with an ex-lover, don’t feel too bad about it. We’ve all been there.

Anyway, while you’re here check out our Instagram Girls of the Month for October. If they don’t help you get over your ex, I don’t know what will.

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