Sex With An Ex

When I broke up with my boyfriend of five months, we promised to stay close friends. Surprisingly, we actually did. In fact, we stayed a little too close and ended up in a sexual relationship for three months even though the romantic side was over.

While the sex was great and filled with the passion of residual post-breakup angst, all my friends warned me against it.

I was convinced we were both mature enough for this no-strings-attached arrangement. Only after months did I realise the truth: I was only fooling myself because it was too hard to let go.

*Names were withheld to protect identities

Why I continued to have ex sex

Many girlfriends of mine have been tempted to hook up with their ex at some point. To most, it has to do with intense feelings and missing the intimacy.

For me, it was also about convenience. Despite our rocky relationship, I still loved him in the bedroom. Where else would I find a bed partner who already knew exactly how I liked it?

Plus, we were comfortable enough that I didn’t have to impress him with cute underwear or even shave my legs.

The emotional connection felt good too, although temporary, especially when we cuddled after. It’s hard to cut someone out of your life cold turkey, so I figured occasional sex was a good way of slowly phasing him out.

But no matter how much I convinced myself I was capable of separating sexual and romantic feelings, I found myself getting emotionally attached again.

Also read:

How To Know When To Breakup With The Person You Love By Someone Who Recently Did

Why having sex with your ex isn’t a great idea

During sex, everything felt okay. I felt like I was in good hands because he was giving his full attention to me and the sex was amazingly intense. I began second-guessing whether we should have broken up, though deep down I knew I didn’t really want to be with him because we weren’t in love.

Gradually, I became aware I was just using sex as a coping mechanism to fill the void of our failed relationship and as a distraction from my loneliness. Being intimate was our desperate attempt to feel the magical way we once did when we were in love.

After a while, the realisation made me feel crappier once the sex was over, and the sex began to feel empty too. It felt shameful because I knew what I was doing was destructive and wasn’t right.

I guess I kept returning to him because he was a safe backup plan. I was settling for him, out of fear of moving on.

The security of sex with someone I trusted turned me away from pursuing anything deeper with anyone else. I somehow forgot I deserved someone who can give me good sex and love. Maybe I was just afraid I could never do better, and that he might be the one that got away.

After being in a friends with benefits relationship for three months, I decided I couldn’t be selfish any longer. I gathered my courage, told my ex we had to put an end to our arrangement and that we should move on.

Sleeping With Your Ex

Ending the sexual relationship was basically a second breakup, and I hated how I had to break his heart twice.

But since removing this toxic relationship from my life, it gave me space to think away from my ex. I finally started learning how to obtain validation from, depend on and take care of myself.

Getting over an ex is never easy, but I promise, the moment you make that decision to let go, it gets easier.

This article was first published on 20 June 2018 and last updated on 14 April 2024. 

Also read:

A Guide To Breaking Up With A Romantic Partner – Best Way To Say Goodbye & Things To Prepare