I Thought Having Sex With Someone New Would Make Me Feel Better, But I Was Wrong

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I was supposed to get over it. My sadness, I mean. That’s what everyone was telling me, but you know, in a softer way. Still, I understood the subtext. The usual monologues as to why I deserved better (though I wasn’t sure I did), the reasons I’d feel better putting myself out there again, how I needed to just move forward.

I had been talking to a funny guy. He was charming and doing cool things with his life. We’d been through similar situations. We had things to bond over. From all sides, it looked like this could be good. Really good.

And then, the night came for us to actually get together and, suddenly, I didn’t want to.

My friends wouldn’t let me cancel the date. I was having terrible cramps (an easy out), but they wouldn’t budge. Instead of letting me cancel, they ran to the nearest CVS and bought me Midol. I took it, reluctantly. I never take pain meds. But this seemed weirdly important. Like I was letting down everyone I knew if I didn’t go. Like I was admitting premature defeat.

Not to mention, I trust my friends. He was older and accomplished. He seemed like a genuine guy, the type of person I would naturally gravitate towards. And with his nearly 10 years on me, surely he’d know how to make a woman feel good. And that’s what I needed. I wanted to forget about the months I spent in an unfulfilling relationship. The months I pretended I felt something that I didn’t. The months I’d been so numb, I was afraid to tell anyone the depth of it.

So it happens. So I push my body against someone else in hopes that it will work magic. Like maybe chemicals will be released and I’ll be happy and in love, or whatever an orgasm is supposed to do. Like maybe this was the antidote. Get into bed with someone new. Get into bed with someone who can remind you how to feel.

Do you know what happens when you sleep with someone for reasons other than wanting to actually fuck them? Nothing. Nothing happens. There is no sexual display of fireworks. There is no magic. If you’re lucky, there’s an orgasm. But if not, you’re just there. With your naked body next to another naked body wondering why you thought this was a good idea. Or why you convinced yourself this would be the cure.

If you fuck someone in the hopes it will give you something you didn’t have before, do yourself a favor and don’t. Find it in yourself first. Take your time. Give yourself the room to grow.

I don’t regret the sex. But I regret thinking it was going to be a fix. I regret not investing in myself first. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

Ari Eastman

✨ real(ly not) chill. poet. writer. mental health activist. mama shark. ✨

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