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Is Sleeping With An Ex A Bad Idea?

Is Sleeping With An Ex A Bad Idea?

Let me recap a little scenario for you: A friend of mine found out her BF was cheating on her, so they broke up. But shortly after they called it quits, she ended up sleeping with him just one more time. She said it was for closure! And TBH, I can’t blame her. In the past, I’ve been tempted to go back to past partners for one more night, but honestly, I could never articulate why. 

Like, is it the allure of the passion you once had for each other? Does it help with closure? Or does sleeping with them mean you’re not quite over them entirely? It’s super confusing AND it’s pretty common: around 53 percent of people sleep with an ex at least once after the breakup, studies report

So, if half of us are already doing it, is it really that big of a deal? Or is it something we should stay away from entirely? Here’s what certified sex and relationship experts have to say about the matter. Read up! 

Why might you be tempted to hook up with an ex?

“Sleeping with an ex can be tempting for some people, as an ex can represent safety and familiarity,” explains Rhiannon John, Sexologist at Besides, hooking up with someone new? It’s daunting, especially if you’re fresh out of a long-term relationship. Instead, you “might find the familiarity of their ex comforting,” John says. 

So, is it actually bad to sleep with an ex? 

Well, it depends. “For those people who left the relationship because it was toxic, sleeping with your ex again is always going to be a bad idea,” John says. “Manipulating exes can use this as a way to work their way back into your lives,” continuing the toxic and manipulative cycle of your relationship, she says. 

But if you and your ex are on friendly, well-established good terms? “Sleeping together can be a fun, no-strings-attached event,” John says. It can even help rekindle the friendship, if you’re looking for ways to still include them in your life. 

That said, be wary of using sex as tactic for getting back together

Like the relationship itself, sex is nuanced and can dredge up old emotional attachments that you might not be fully prepared to address. For this reason, “I would be mindful of using sex as a way to get your partner back, as it will take a lot more than sex, to rekindle a relationship,” John says. You’ll have to do a lot of work to figure out the differences that caused your initial split, which can be taxing, and may remind you of why you’re not together in the first place, afterall! 

So, have you ever slept with an ex? Do you plan to in the future? Let us know what you think. And remember, we’re here to help!

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