Whether it’s done out of nostalgia, loneliness, or pure unadulterated lust, jumping back in the sack with someone from your past can yield mixed results all around.

In the moment the temptation can be overwhelming, but often both parties are left with regret. Other times, of course, ex sex is precisely what’s needed to rekindle a love you thought had passed for good.

So what is it that leads us to have sex with someone from our past? And if you know it’s going to happen regardless of whether it’s right or not, how can you at least make sure it’s good sex?

3 reasons singles engage in ex sex

1.  Saying hello to “old faithful”

Meeting someone new involves quite a lot of personal investment. We traverse the apps, the bars, the gym, searching until that one-in-a-thousand person turns up who might even vaguely be a plausible romantic interest.

Then there’s the getting to know each other, the sometimes awkward first date… and those initial nervous fumblings in the bedroom, at the end of which you’re perhaps only 50% likely to have been satisfied.

That’s a lot of time. Not to mention money and emotional effort.

And if they’re not The One, what was it all for? One orgasm?

…Hell nah!

Sometimes convenience is everything. That doesn’t necessarily make it right—but then this isn’t exactly about what’s “right,” but rather what’s right for you right here right now.

2. Curiosity

Relationships don’t work out for a myriad of reasons—but sexual compatibility isn’t always one of them. That’s why you sometimes find yourself daydreaming about your ex’s prowess—then having to snap out of it by remembering how awful they might have been the other 90% of the time.

Still, you do drift off and wonder sometimes… Do they still deploy that signature move? Have they added to their repertoire of late? Do they still look so exceptionally fine when they get out the shower? Yeesh…

…So when you spot them at 2am at a party and everyone’s gone home, well… it’d be rude not to. Right?

3. It’s hot—simple as that!

The truth is, maybe you’ve just not sexually connected with anyone in the same way since your ex. Despite all the trials and tribulations, if the sex was cosmic it can be seriously hard to move on from.

That’s why ex sex is such a common fantasy. We imagine it will somehow right the wrongs, rectify missed orgasms—then miraculously somehow fix the entire relationship.

Unfortunately, the reason you guys broke up is probably because you already tried sorting things out in the past, and it just wasn’t to be. Of course that doesn’t mean you can’t sidle back into their bedchamber when the moon is bright and the stars are twinkling—but if you’re imagining hot ex sex to be anything other than an occasional slice of Friday night fun, you’re likely to be sadly mistaken.

Communicate your intentions—then go ahead and jump right in

Go into ex sex with an open mind—and clear motivations. You don’t want to wake up and scoot out of their apartment only to get home and see they’ve posted an old picture of you guys on Instagram captioned Back together at last! Who’s gonna end up looking like the bad guy in that situation, no matter how egregious the miscommunication was? Here’s a clue: It’s not your ex.

More importantly, before you dive into the hay, think about the real reason you’re so keen to do this. Is it truly just to relive the good times, or is something else going on? Do you still have feelings lying deep and dormant, just waiting to be unlocked and set free by a stupendous session of ex sex? Or do you genuinely just need to scratch this sexy itch? Will it leave you with emotional closure (or at least neutrality), or is this encounter realistically just going to eff you up for a while after?

Oh, and finally—and less sexily, but still crucially—stay safe. You may have spent the post-breakup period glued to an armchair cry-watching Gilmore Girls—but your ex may have been taking a slightly different approach to working through their emotions.

…Basically, get tested. Before and after, ideally.

How’s that for a cold bucket of water after a steamy sesh of questionable ex sex?

Maclynn is a boutique, multi-award-winning introductions agency with offices in New Jersey, New York, California, and London. We’re world-renowned for bringing together highly compatible singles within our vast network of attractive, intelligent professionals, and our matchmakers are relationship experts in their own right. Get in touch today, and prepare for genuinely meaningful dating—just like you deserve.