Break-ups are tough, there’s no doubt about it. Your self-esteem plummets, you may feel angry and sad, and you long to be with your ex. When it comes to moving on with your life what are you to do? 'There’s no better way to get over an ex than to get under someone else,' is how the saying goes. But is there any truth in it?
That’s just what a team of US researchers wanted to know. They dug around for scientific data on rebound and revenge sex, but their search turned up next to nothing.
Typing the terms into Google was a different story. ‘Rebound sex’ and ‘revenge sex’ gave them 18,000,000 hits, they say. Try it yourself and you’ll get a different result… but anyway, we get the idea. They figured it was high time to research what goes on in our sex lives after a relationship ends.
Revenge sex is sweet
The first thing they did was round up 170 university students who’d all gone through a recent break-up. The suffering students had to fill in an online diary for a few months. Each week, they confessed how they felt about their ex – whether they were still madly in love or despised them and wanted revenge.
The students also told the researchers if they’d had sex over the past week, and the reasons for it. They could choose from options like cheering themselves up, helping them get over their ex, or sweet revenge.
Who were the students having sex with after their break-up? Sex with the ex happened about 20 per cent of the time, the research showed.
But when they weren’t crawling back into bed with their former sweetheart, the students were after comfort or revenge in the arms of another lover.
Does rebound sex help?
Within one month of their break-up, one out of every three students had rebound sex to give their self-esteem a much-needed boost or to get over the pain of having lost their partner, the study showed. One in four were seeking revenge – they wanted to get back at their ex and figured sex with someone else was a great way to do it.
Not surprisingly, both rebound and revenge sex became less common over time as the students got on with their lives.
So do the researchers think rebound sex can really help heal your broken heart? Indeed they do. 'For some people, having sex with a new partner is a healthy and necessary part of moving on,' they conclude.
Source: Rebound Sex: Sexual Motives and Behaviors Following a Relationship Breakup, Lindsay L. Barber, M. Lynne Cooper
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