Negative Post-Coital Emotion – Is It Real?

Negative Post-Coital Emotion – Is It Real?

Usually sexual encounters are considered to be fun, therapeutic and utterly incredible. However, at times after sex we feel like something is missing or going wrong or it shouldn’t have happened. Its sign on negative post-coital emotion.

Have you ever had such miserable feeling? Have you ever felt down or sad after a pleasing sex?  Have anxiety or felt like crying? You might think that there is something wrong with you or with your relationship. However, these tears are not always due to your sexual relationship or because of your partner.

What are negative post-coital emotions?

Negative post-coital emotion is also known as post coital tristesse (PCT) or post coital dysphoria (PSD). It is the deep feeling of depression, sadness, anxiety, protest and anger after having sex.

Women expressed the feeling of distress and grief, whereas men experience frustration and lack of interest towards their sexual partner.

According to a new research, published in the Journal of Sexual Medicine, about 46% women experience this issue at least once during their lifetime. Post sexual despair may occur in the form of irritation, depression, tears, anxiety etc. Another study analyzed the incidence and pathophysiology of PCT among a variety of volunteers from different countries i.e. America, Canada, Norway and Brazil. It was observed that about 40 percent of the female volunteers stated that they sometimes feel teary or depressed after sex and a similar percentage of males stated that they often experience these negative feelings for some other reasons.

What are the causes of Negative Post-Coital Emotions?

A group of researchers from Queensland Institute of Technology, Australia suggested that the feeling of sadness after intercourse doesn’t necessarily means that you are not sexually satisfied but it may be due to hormonal imbalance that occurs after orgasm or because of various other reasons.

According to Schweitzer, having sex is pleasing and enjoyable for most of the women but some might have negative feelings or PCD symptoms even after having a nice satisfying session of sex. This could probably because of the feeling of reluctance to surrender or giving up themselves while having sex.

Many researchers believe that for men, the physical and sexual appeal of partners matters a lot, especially if they have numerous sexual partners this might be the reason of their short-term relationships. However, women’s thinking is totally different as they get emotionally attached and involved even after one-night stands. This emotional behavior of women may become the reason of their long-term relationships. For these women, it is separation anxiety, because they feel connection and closeness with their partner and they want to pursue long term relationships

Brazilian researchers believe that the symptoms of PCD mostly occur in short term relationships but Schweitzer believe that it can also occur in long-term healthy relationships. He underlines that it is not due to the intimacy issue as there is no relation between PCD and intimacy in various close sexual relationships. And women can also have the feeling of sadness and distress in healthy relationships.  The history of mistreatment or abuse can also cause sadness and other PCD symptoms. However, there is nothing wrong and abnormal with these women and it is a quite natural occurrence. There is nothing to be ashamed of.


If you are experiencing negative emotions or feelings after sex there is nothing wrong with you. Different studies suggest that it can happen to a number of women and men and it is totally normal. However, if you feel that these negative emotions are affecting the quality of your sexual relationships, you should speak to your healthcare provider.



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