Does Having Sex With An Ex Help You Get Closure? Experts Say To Skip That Final Booty Call

Healing from a hard breakup is rarely ever easy, and when you're hurting, you might be willing try anything to let go of that pain and move forward. That includes considering sleeping with an ex, if you think it might help you close the chapter on the relationship. But does having sex with an ex help you get closure, or is it just an excuse to reconnect with that ex and ease the pain for a minute? And if it doesn't work, how can you actually get the healing closure you need to fully put that relationship in the rear view?

These are exactly the kinds of questions I've asked myself after splitting up with someone I cared about. And I know I can't be alone in wondering if one final hookup would do the trick. So, to help clarify whether or not it's ever a good idea to fall back into bed with a former flame, I reached out to the experts, Trina Leckie, breakup coach and host of the Breakup BOOST podcast, and Cherlyn Chong, a dating and breakup recovery coach for professional women, for their advice about how to actually get closure, and to ask if that process includes one last sex sesh for the road. Here is what they had to say.

Is it ever a good idea to sleep with an ex you’re still getting over?

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“It is not a good idea [to sleep with you ex] because after a breakup, people need to focus on their healing,” Leckie tells Elite Daily. “You have broken up for a reason, and the reason why people breakup is because they need to go their separate ways,” she says. While the temptation may be strong to fall back into those old patterns with a former lover, Leckie says it usually only results in blurring the lines you are trying to draw. “In most cases, when people are still sleeping together after a breakup, one person is holding onto hope that they will get back together, and the other person who wanted the breakup is often taking advantage of that,” Leckie explains. “This type of situation can lead to more hurt feelings, confusion, jealousy, and drama.”

For the most part, Chong agrees, saying that reengaging with your ex sexually only brings up more questions than it answers. “Do you still have feelings for me? Do you want to get back together? Usually, the emotionally unavailable partner would be incapable or unwilling to answer those questions,” she warns Elite Daily. However, it’s not always this cut and dry. While Chong concurs that breakup sex almost always just adds to your heartache, she adds that, in some cases, that extra heartache may result in something good: Growth. “Sometimes, a person needs to experience more pain in order to finally decide that it just isn’t worth it. That will then lead to them finding closure within themselves,” she explains. But still, proceed with caution.

Why ex sex won’t give you closure.

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While on some level, having one last sexual encounter with your ex may sound like a way to close the door and move on, Leckie stresses that the only real way to achieve closure is by being honest with yourself. “What gives you closure is accepting that the breakup has happened. Accepting that the relationship is over,” she says. “When people are still asking for closure after a breakup, it’s usually just an excuse to keep in contact with their ex to try to mend things or to try to convince them that they should still be together.”

How to get actual closure after a breakup

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If having sex with your former flame won’t give you the closure you need, what will? According to Chong, the only person you can ever really get closure is from yourself. “The first step is to understand and accept that closure really comes from within you. Even if an ex answers all of your questions, you’ll be coming back for more. The thing is, the ex can’t ever resolve the real problem for you. That’s for you to figure out,” she says. The key, says Chong, is to take a step back and really assess the relationship objectively. She says to ask yourself: “What could have been improved? What does the ex need to take responsibility for? What do you need to take responsibility for?” Those questions can help you let go of any blame and anger that could be holding you back from healing “Stop blaming anyone, even yourself, and take responsibility for your part. Sometimes closure can be just admitting that you attracted and stayed with an emotionally unavailable person,” Chong concludes.

Leckie agrees that closure is something you choose, rather than something someone gives you. “Say everything you need to say at the time in which the breakup happens, and then go no contact so that you can get your emotions in check, heal from your heartbreak, and move forward in a positive direction,” she concludes.

Ultimately, getting closure is not easy, or else we’d all have it after a breakup. As the experts say, it's something that comes from within, and it's a process, so be gentle and generous with yourself as you go through it. At least one thing seems to be certain: Hooking up with your ex is not the answer if what you really want is to turn the page and move on.