I Made My Boyfriend Crying After Sex: Will Your Spouse Be Sad After Intercourse?

Hi Sohimi,

Last week, I rolled the sheets with my boyfriend, and I found that he was crying after sex. I didn’t take it seriously. I fell asleep when I was too tired. Then, it’s the day before yesterday, I found that he was crying again… I wondered if I was not so good, right? Should I cry if I want to cry? When asked what happened to him, he couldn’t tell it clearly, that is, he felt uncomfortable and wanted to cry…I was a little worried, he wouldn’t be depressed, right? But I don’t usually do anything. Recently, we just finished the sex and that’s it. Am I too good or too bad? I can’t help but think about it!

A girl with trouble

girl in sad

Hi Anonymous,

I’m sure that your boyfriend is not the first person who has encountered “Post-coital dysphoria” (PCD, also called post-coital depression, and it will also cause anxiety. The abbreviation PCD will be used in the following). In addition to men, many women will also have it with or within orgasm. Today, let’s talk about this “post-coital anxiety disorder”.

What is post-coital anxiety?

Anxiety disorder after sexual intercourse mainly refers to the feeling of anxiety, restlessness, and sadness after (consensual) sex. A study published in the Journal of Sexual Medicine in 2015 showed that PCD is a broad term that refers to a variety of negative emotions including anxiety, excitement, crying, depression, and even aggression after intercourse. It usually occurs within five minutes to two hours after sex.

Just like some people will hug each other after sex, some will meditate (don’t know what to think, maybe just give up?), some will come to smoke, and some will have PCD.

In fact, PCD existed as early as the ancient Greek era. The great philosopher Aristotle once said: “All the animals will be melancholy after intercourse. (Post coitum omne animal triste est)”

Although I don’t know how Aristotle knew it, people just came to this conclusion. Current research shows that not all people have this disorder (it can be deduced that not all animals are depressed ), but Aristotle’s words at least show that this situation already existed in that era.

sad girl in bed

In 2018, a study surveyed approximately 1,200 men between the ages of 18 and 81 from 78 different countries. A 30-minute online survey was conducted on them. One of the questions asked whether they have experienced “unexplainable tears, sadness, or irritability after a mutually agreed sexual activity” in the past 4 weeks or ever.

The results show that about 41% of men have experienced PCD; about 20% of men have experienced this condition in the past 4 weeks; about 4% of men said they “experienced this condition most or all of the time “.

It should be noted that PCD occurs between men and women, and even the proportion of women appearing is higher than that of men.

In 2015, the “Journal of Sexual Medicine” published a research report on 230 female college students in Australia. Their age ranged from 18 to 55, with an average age of 26. The report showed that 46% of women said they had experienced PCD in the past; about 5% of women said they had had symptoms in the past month; about 2% of women reported “always” or “most of the time”.

From the above research, we can see that a large proportion of men and women have experienced PCD. Many people may feel baffled, at a loss, or even thinking when they experience PCD or their sexual partners' experience PCD. Don’t panic, let’s take a look at what caused them to have PCD.

What is the cause of PCD?

From a medical point of view, there is a saying that PCD is just a brief sense of loss after the pleasure of orgasm. From a sexology point of view, it may be because of the “refractory period” after male sexual intercourse is at work.

sad man in bathroom

International Society of Sexual Medicine also provides some theoretical explanations:

  1. It may be related to such close and in-depth contact with your partner during sexual intercourse, and the separation after the end destroys this intimacy;
  2. The existence of this reaction may be related to past sexual abuse;
  3. Conflicts in intimate relationships may also be a potential cause.

In addition, it may also be related to the changes in hormones. A variety of hormones such as dopamine, oxytocin, and endorphins are produced during the same intercourse. The ups and downs of hormones may lead to changes in mood. Of course, recent psychological state/life pressure, etc., may also be an important factor leading to the appearance of PCD.

Someone asked why men have PCD, and most of the men’s answers are as follows:

  1. Your partner does not care about your feelings, which makes people feel neglected;
  2. Experienced a bad one-night stand;
  3. Shame due to religious belief;
  4. Feel the current relationship is not good.

How to deal with PCD?

First of all, we need to know that PCD is a relatively common situation, so we don’t need to pay extra attention or focus on it to not cause greater pressure on our partner or ourselves.

Secondly, we need to try to perceive it and try to describe what causes our PCD situation.

sad man on bed

If it is because you have suffered sexual abuse, or have separation anxiety, and your intimacy is affected by PCD, you can consider psychological treatment or counseling.

If it’s because of hormones, then we won’t be a big problem when we recover afterward.

If it is because of excessive pressure recently or a problem in the intimate relationship, it is recommended that both parties communicate in time to actively relieve the pressure and be honest about the problem.

In general, the current understanding and research on PCD are not sufficient. At this stage, we only need to know that there is such a situation, face it squarely, but don’t pay too much attention, and treat it with peace of mind. If you or your partner experience anxiety, tears, anxiety, etc. So please don’t rush to get up and leave after sex. Hugging and chatting may help you know the reason and calm the current emotions.

Maybe people can try sex toys

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