I’d like to say this would have been the first time for me… Buuuut nope. I have actually cried a handful of times after sex. After a little bit of research, thinking that I’m going crazy I found that I wasn’t the only one! It is actually called postcoital dysphoria (PCD).
PCD symptoms may include tearfulness, sadness, and irritability after consensual sex, even if it was perfectly satisfying.
Who would have known that this is a normal thing! I was never taught about this in school before and no one I know ever spoke about it. In the past year, I’ve tried to focus on my mental health a lot and this was just a part of my journey. Now I don’t cry every time, and I honestly haven’t in a long time which is why I was pretty surprised and kind of bummed when it happened last night.
When It Happens
There is no recipe for what makes it happen and not happen, unfortunately. I used to think it meant that I didn’t like someone when I was younger. I noticed that it would even happen when I loved someone, and I thought it was happy tears. I cried again after sex when I was totally overwhelmed by my everyday life.
What It Feels Like
I don’t know it’s going to happen during sex. I usually go about having a great time and then after the activities are over I just completely fill with emotions and I cry, sometimes I don’t even realize I’m crying. I would describe it as a tight feeling in my chest, almost like it’s going to explode. Once I feel the tears I have a moment of complete embarrassment and shame. The worst is that I often don’t know why I am crying but I am embarrassed that I am. I have gotten pretty good at hiding it from people but sometimes I’m not able to.
How To React
It can be totally alarming if your partner starts crying after sex, I totally get that! You think you did something wrong, you think that it hurt them, you pressured them, a million things run through your head. Over my few experiences here is what I think you should do (know this will be different for everyone!). I’d suggest always asking if your partner is ok, ask if there is anything they need or that you can do, and just do your best to comfort them as they like. Try talking about it when the event is over, ask them what you can do at that moment to help them. I found that it is best to have this conversation at a separate time when you are both in a clear mindset and able to talk openly.
What Not To Do
This is also different for everyone but don’t walk away, or pretend like nothing is happening. I’ve had partners realize I’m crying and would just get up and leave like nothing was going on. Then I was crying for a whole other reason! Make that person feel loved, and cared for. Sometimes your partner might be ashamed that they are feeling this way, reassuring them that their feelings are valid and you are sticking around anyways is important!
Moral Of The Story: I cry, we all cry. Crying after sex is normal, you’re not crazy! It’s a thing.