Is It OK to Sleep With Your Ex?

We ask nine real, live, sex-having women to weigh in

April 26, 2016 9:00 am

Recycling (verb):

  1. to convert (waste) into reusable material
  2. to hook up with someone you’ve previously dated

This regards the latter.

Some studies say it’s fine and dandy and eases the pain of a breakup. Other psychologists warn against it, stating it just leads to long, drawn-out separations. But everybody’s doin’ it. Or at least 20-35% of split couples are admitting to it.

So we sought out advice on the debate from those whose opinions matter most: nine real, live, sex-having women.

It’s the first in a series wherein we tap a field of “experts” for their opinions on all things sex and relationships.

Here’s what they had to say about putting an old hit back into the rotation. (Note: in most cases, names have been changed for discretionary purposes.)

Frances, 32, Creative Consultant
Married and very stoked about it
“Haven’t had the opportunity to recycle in a long-ass time, but as someone who has lived through it all and come out the other side on top … DON’T DO IT. Just why? Because you want to have an easy lay? Isn’t that what Raya is for? Sounds fun, sure, but good luck with that! The only way it could be beneficial is if you could truly have it be 100% only sex and nothing else. Not so realistic.”

Otto, 35, Magazine Editor
Coupled up and in it to win it
“Totally fine. You can’t be friends with them, but you can certainly nail them. The worst thing that’s going to come of it is that they fall back in love with you. But that’s kind of on them. ‘Fool me once…’ and what not. All in all, it’s comfortable and typically pretty hot. Like eating your favorite meal at restaurant that closed down. So satisfying.”

Zosia, 32, Print Manager
Single and half-assing it
“Only if my objective is to ‘un-ex’ said ex. If not, I’d rather take a clean plate and go back to the buffet.”

Katie, 29, Film Producer
Single and self-focused after a long stint of serious relationships
“It depends if one of you is still in love with the other. For me, recycling is only hot when it’s a little hateful, a little pitiful or if you genuinely believe it might lead to rekindling the fire. If you want to be friends forever — best not.”

Bethany, 28, Model/Actress
Single and good at it
“I don’t see the harm. I think it’s better than sleeping with some D-bag while you’re in that single in-between stage waiting to meet the next potential boyfriend.”

Stella, 32, Personal Assistant
Getting pretty domestic
“Ah — the joys of sleeping with an ex, whether it’s a guy who dumped you who you now get to show what a huge mistake he made, or a guy you dumped who you now get to show ​how good you are at casual sex. For almost my entire 20s, I had no idea it was a bad idea to sleep with an ex. Then after a big breakup and months of ex-sex, my friends pooled their money and bought me the best dildo out there. Long story short, I haven’t slept with an ex since.”

Lily, 27, Marketing Coordinator
Single, some days more than others
“Nope. They ended up in the trash for a reason. Why waste time collecting empty bottles when there’s a fridge full of fresh Champagne for the taking? Let someone else dumpster dive for them.”

Ariana, 37, Marketing Director
Single and in the game
“Not such a good thing, as you’re not always on the same page. That said, I’ve done it and it’s been both amazing and disastrous. And when it was disastrous it was epically disastrous. So much so that I may have learned my lesson — may have.”

Jean, 30, Financial Services
Six years single and effin’ exhausted
“Classic move and a handy way to keep the numbers down. It’s also just too easy to go back and hook up with someone you feel totally comfortable with and knows exactly how to get you off. Gets a little sticky when you start doing it too often.”

Win the Ultimate Formula 1® Miami Grand Prix Experience

Want the F1 experience of a lifetime? Here’s your chance to win tickets to see Turn 18 Grandstand, one of Ultimate Formula 1® Miami Grand Prix’s most premier grandstands!