Post-Sexual Depression: Characteristics and Causes

Some people feel sad after having sex. This is what is called post-exogenous depression, which is completely normal if it dissipates rapidly and does not acquire a high intensity.

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Some studies indicate that 10% of people experience post-sexual depression. It is an access of unexplainable sadness after having sex. Now, this situation has nothing to do with the way that relationship took place. As pleasant as it may have been, in the end they feel depressed.

Actually, post-expo- sive depression is not considered a disorder, or a dysfunction or anything like that. In most cases, it is nothing more than a kind of emotional discomfort that has no greater significance. However, if that state is maintained for too long a time, it could indicate some deeper problem.

“Lust deserves to be treated with pity and apology when it is exercised to learn to love.”

-Dante Alighieri-

So far, science has not fully elucidated why this emotional state arises. There are several theories about it. It must also be said that none of them can explain all the cases. What applies to some people does not apply to others. Post-expous depression may be due to many factors.

What is Post-Sex Depression?

The Journal of Sexual Health published a study in which the characteristics of post-sexual depression are detailed. Although it can vary from one person to another, the central element is the presence of a feeling of sadness, which appears right after the end of intercourse. This sensation is defined as inexplicable, since it does not keep correlation with the experienced pleasure.

The most common is that this state of sadness is maintained for a few minutes, and then disappear in a trace. However, there are those who maintain that feeling for several hours. There are also cases of people who last several days experiencing depression.

The sensation that is experienced is described as a kind of existential vacuum. There is a desire to cry, but the person does not know why. He also feels irritability, bad mood and desire to isolate himself.

The physiological reasons

According to doctors Brian Bird, Robert Schweitzer and Donald Strassberg, who have studied this topic thoroughly, during a sexual relationship there is a kind of hormonal revolution. Later something like a sudden stabilization attempt occurs after the climax. This dynamic leads to the levels of hormones fall sharply and depression arises.

For his part, Dr. Richard A. Friedman, director of the psychopharmacological clinic at Weill Cornell Medical College, explains that during orgasm there is a sharp decrease in the activity of the amygdala of the brain. This area has to do with the processing of fear.

What happens, then, is that during sexual intercourse, fear and all associated sensations decrease markedly. After the climax, the brain wants to quickly recover these sensations, since they are essential for survival. That is why there is a rebound of those emotions, which generates that strange feeling of emptiness.

Psychological reasons

The human being is not only biology. What happens to us can not be explained only in terms of hormones and neurotransmitters. If this were the case, basically all cases of post-expous depression would be the same. However, it is known that there are notable variations around this aspect. This is because the theme also involves symbolic elements that are translated into feelings.

Some psychologists have pointed out that the intensity of post-sexual depression is higher and longer in those who have mixed feelings about sex. Sometimes they feel guilty when experiencing sexual pleasure, due to a very restrictive education or character traits that induce them to blame.

Likewise, it is possible that this feeling of depression originates in the inability to reach full orgasm. The person experiences frustration and this manifests as post-sexual depression.

When to worry?

As we have already noted, post-expous depression is completely normal in most cases. It is known that its incidence is a little higher in women. If it occurs, but then dissipates after a few minutes, there is nothing to worry about.

The duration of that state is a definite factor, as well as the intensity. If it lasts a long time and is experienced intensely, there are likely to be other underlying problems. This could be just a manifestation of a state of more severe depression and in that case it would require professional management.

Likewise, if the sadness is derived from unpleasant sexual relations or the attitude of the couple, the depression becomes a warning signal for what happens in the relationship. In this or another case, it is best to go to a professional if the problem is maintained over time.