Post Sex Blues
The world seems completely obsessed with sex and all the hype around it. This however can have a chronic impact on us when we feel melancholy following sexual activity.
The tv, media, papers, pornography, friends and magazines portray how amazing sex is meant to be, how we are supposed to act and feel. This can lead us to feel that we are underperforming, that our body doesn’t respond the correct way, that we are broken and or not normal and that we are alone in how we feel. We tend to start to believe all these false misrepresentations.
Post-coital dysphoria or post-coital tristesse is a term used to describe post consensual sex feelings, such as:
“Is there something wrong with me”
“Should I be feeling something else”
“Am I broken”
These are phrases and questions I am often asked…
And YES you are completely normal and NO you’re not broken!
Sex can release an explosion of hormones throughout our bodies, both during and following sex - including endorphins, oxytocin and prolactin. The feel good hormones which are associated with an orgasm peak to such a level at the peak of an orgasm and then drop following. It is this drop that can cause all the sadness and melancholy to follow. This has been described as an intense feeling of joy to feeling desolate.
This whole experience is perfectly normal and its an organic biological function which happens to many many people.
Like with any drug there is a high and a low - sex is no exception!
A recent study revealed that 46% of 230 female participants experienced or suffered with this post-coital dysphroia when having sex frequently. Another study in 2011 stated that a 3rd of women following satisfactory sex stated they felt depressed and or low.
The main takeaway is if you’re feeling low, down. depressed or melancholy following sex, then a regular checkup with your general practitioner would be advised to have your hormone levels checked. Following this speaking with a sex therapist would also be advisable as the issue may actually be within the relationship itself as opposed to the sex within that relationship.