Bed-Jumping Not Good Solution for Heartbreak, Columnist Says

Matthew Gruchow

Matthew Gruchow

Editor’s note: This column may contain subject matter of a graphic or sexual nature.

Dear Matthew,

My boyfriend and I broke up after nearly two years together. I’ve cried to my friends about it and they seem to think having sex with someone right away will help me get over him faster. Should I?

– In Limbo

Dear In Limbo,

Surveys and statistics show that sexual standards are lacking in the general population as a whole. One of the symptoms of this is the use of sex as a “get over him/her” fix, and the use of sex as a substitute for dealing with one’s emotional problems.

Research does show that sex has therapeutic properties: lowers blood pressure, relieves stress, good for the cardiovascular system, relieves headaches (sorry, headache excuse doesn’t work anymore). However, sex will not mend a broken heart.

To go from one bed so quickly to another bed is at the very least immature and at the worst dangerous. Relationships break apart and that’s sad; people use other people and sex to get over it and that’s even sadder. It’s a sign of a mangled moral compass.

I can tell you from experience: I had a girlfriend who, after we broke up after a year together, was in bed with another man not 48 hours later. It said a lot about the content of her character and also volumes about how she valued me (I was very replaceable), sex (she’ll have it anytime and anywhere), and herself (I’m free, use me). I hope, Dear Reader, you don’t choose to follow that path.

A nasty breakup is not the time to go bed-jumping. You’ll regret it, I promise. Instead, I offer you only what may be old and oft-repeated advice: Take your time and talk to someone. Give yourself as much time to heal as you want, whether that’s one week, one month or five years. Don’t let anyone put you on a time schedule. But do heal, and do move on. And don’t underestimate the power of talk therapy. Finding a sympathetic ear on a good listener can do wonders for a hurting soul.

In short, doing the horizontal tango with another man before you’re ready will not make the emotional problems go away. One night of sex isn’t going to make the memories of a two year relationship easier to bear, or soften the pain of a break up. The pleasure will be temporary. You’ll still hurt. Then, in the morning, when you gather your clothes off the floor you’ll also want to look for your self respect.

Send your sex questions to Matt and Kara at [email protected]. They’ll help you out.