Word has it that sex with your ex is a part of the millennial experience. New data from dating site eharmony reveals that sex with your ex is trending among millennial singles. Whether attempting to rekindle the love or the comfort of being with a body they’re accustomed to, it seems there’s no separating millennials from their exes. Read on to find out what the latest data and a dating specialist has to say about it.
What’s the Deal With Millennials and Sex With Their Ex?
Data from a recent eharmony study suggests that 70% of single millennials have had sex with an ex after breaking up with them. The reasons for opting for a steamy session with an ex are pretty varied and sometimes complicated. Whether the decision is motivated by NSA (No Strings Attached) type of sex, a need for familiarity, last-time sex, or purely a passionate mistake, it is extremely common among this generation of daters.
21Ninety spoke with eharmony dating specialist Laurel House to investigate the millennial habit of sex with an ex and post-breakup trends.
A Few Reasons for Returning to an Ex
House explains that the data points to a millennial desire to change past unhealthy dating and relationship patterns. Since many couples initiate deep connection through sex and intimacy, sex with an ex may point to a desire to forge meaningful relationships.
Admittedly, people return to their exes for both good and bad reasons. House states that among the unhealthy reasons lie “sexual chemistry (without other forms of connection), insecurity, ‘one last time’ closure sex, fear of being alone, habit, and unhealthy attachments.” It’s also true that complicated emotional connections and misaligned communication influence why couples get back together against better judgment.
For House, healthy reasons to return to an ex may be as simple as initially not being best aligned at the time of the relationship and since evolving. Once both individuals are on the same page, it may seem like an opportune time to rekindle the romance.
Healthy Approaches to Closure and Sex with an Ex
“To end the relationship with true and healthy closure, avoid seeing each other for one last time,” advises House. A healthier approach to this is sitting with your intentions; does your desire to see them again support or hinder the attachment/bond you’re trying to sever? House asks singles to use honesty and intentionality to review their inner feelings.
House encourages a sense of discipline to prompt healthy closure. As a rule, House recommends physical, digital, and accidental contact (no driving by their workplace or checking in with their family and friends). “It will hurt at first. In fact, it could feel physically painful to cut ties cold turkey, but it is the best way to heal so that you can move on,” adds House.
Questions To Ask Yourself Post-Breakup
There are several ways to approach self-analysis after a breakup. Journaling with specific breakup prompts, therapy, and finding communities and support systems are just a few coping mechanisms. Millennials, dubbed the ‘Therapy Generation’, may find the vulnerability of theraphy to be a great comfort. 26% of millennials find that they are more likely to cope with therapy than any other generation after a breakup, according to eharmony data.
Otherwise, millennials may find that simply interviewing themselves will reveal some answers to their future relationship and sexual partnerships. House provides a few questions to contemplate:
What did I like about myself when we were together?
How would I describe my personality? Outgoing, balanced, fun?
Is there a side of myself that I abandoned for the sake of the relationship?
After answering these questions, House believes you’ll be more rooted in your decision-making and engaging with your ex. “You can thank your ex for helping that side of you to come out and continue to nurture that aspect of your personality without them,” she suggests.
The trick for millennials is deep-diving into their reasons for returning to an ex. Whether sex with an ex is still a go or not the best idea, the personal work should ignite healthier, more self-aware decision-making.