11 Women Spill Whether Breakup Sex *Actually* Helps You Move On

Breakups are like emotional tapas. They're a smorgasbord of feelings that sometimes, come all at once and other times, come on separate little plates. One day, you may wish your ex would get an unflattering haircut and move to Latvia, and the next, you may want to get frisky with them in the shower. Regardless of why you ended things or what stage of the post-breakup healing process you're in, it's natural to wonder: Does breakup sex help you move on?

If getting it on after saying goodbye seems appealing to you both, doing the dirty after a dumping may actually feel really good. Of course, in the wake of a breakup, if getting physical with your ex seems like the last thing you'd want to do, breakup sex may not be your thing (and that's OK, too). From debating joining a convent to sexting your ex at work — there is no one way to heal from a breakup. And as long as you and your ex are on the same page, there's no wrong way to go about it.

I asked 11 women about their experiences with breakup sex, and what they said really covers it all.

Guille Faingold/Stocksy
It Made Me Realize I Was Totally Over Him
My ex and I broke up a few weeks before his birthday. I had already special ordered him a gift I knew he would really like, and when his birthday came, I left it on his porch with a little note. Of course, that led to a long phone call, which led to another date (which would thankfully be our last). We were naked in bed and had been going at it for a while when he went to get a condom and realized he didn't have one. He just said, 'Guess I don't have a condom' and then literally went to sleep. Frankly, I was frustrated he didn't offer to go down on me or continue doing other things, like fingering. It was so bizarre and unsettling that it made me realize I was totally over him. I left the next morning and never called him again.

— Gretchen, 26

It Made It Even Harder, But OMG — It Was Incredible
I'm currently going through an insanely sad breakup. We still love each other and live together, but for a slew of excellent reasons, it's over. He's been on the couch for a few days and we had the 'it's really over' talk last night, hugged our last hug and then all of the sudden, flames. It was some of the best sex I've ever had. It definitely is making this even harder than it already was, but OMG — it was incredible.


It's Hot
Breakup sex is very hot. The few times I have done it, it was pretty damn sweet and sexy. Just good to get it out of your system and end the relationship the right way.


A Swirl Of Emotions
It's tumultuous. It's always involved a bit of a swirl of emotions, some of them conflicting. Between the nature of the encounters, the mental and emotional state I was in during them, and the amount of time that has passed since all of my breakup sex encounters... I can't really go into much more detail, sorry.


Best Decision We Could Have Made
We broke up in a messy and emotional way because we just weren't compatible and didn't want to accept it, but I had to stay at his for the night because of trains. We both felt like utter garbage, and had treated each other like garbage, but both knew that we wouldn't be able to feel worse when morning rolled around and I would leave. So, we spent the night cuddling, talking, and having sex. Best decision we could have made.

— Joan, 27

Way More Kinky
If you still have feelings for this person, I think it's a bad idea in the long run. However, some of the best sex I ever had was breakup sex. So much rougher. More anal (which I love, we hadn't really even done it up to that point). Way more kinky.

— Jackie, 25

Comfort Without Committing
It’s nice to be with someone physically, while moving on emotionally. Comfort without committing again.


It Was A Great Decision
I had sex with two of my ex-girlfriends after breaking up and in both cases, it went really well, considering we are still great friends. So, in my case it was a really great decision to keep having sex for a while after breaking up.


It's Good If You've Resolved Your Relationship Issues
In my experience, it depends on why you broke up. If the sex was good and not the problem, if you still basically like each other but just aren't heading toward the same life goals, then I don't see a problem. It's friendly sex with someone you're already comfortable with. You've already resolved your relationship issues, no need to rehash them. As long as both parties know and are OK with what it does and doesn't mean, its just good clean fun.


I Was Just Hurting Myself
I was still so in love with him, I realized I was just hurting myself.

— Kim, 23

It's Only Fun For A Little While
I have — with both of my exes. Like most cases, it's fun for a little, then it's just not worth it. Different people have different experiences and opinions.


Healing from a breakup can take time and patience. If getting a little physical with an old flame feels right for you, breakup sex may help heal your heart. Of course, if the idea of touching your ex after the breakup makes you want to move to Latvia, breakup sex may not be for you. Whether you're eating sorbet alone in the tub or having sex with an ex in their apartment above the sorbet shop — moving on from a breakup looks different for everyone.