Depression after sex?

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  • #23025

    Hi all—

    This is my intro post, I’m just looking for answers, confirmation. I don’t know if I have a condition that is mental or physical, or if I am normal. I think I’m dealing with something a little different than pain during sex.

    I’m a woman in her late 20s. I have always had a low libido I can reach orgasm relatively pain-free, if rarely, but afterwards, I often feel very depressed.

    Sometimes the depression will be brief and mild, I may just feel a little spaced out. Often I will feel irritable, unmotivated and unable to relax. I get headaches, I lose all my energy but find it hard to sleep. At its worst, I have extreme mood swings, and I think my body’s immune system even drops, because I often feel like I have a cold the next day. That might be a coincidence, or due to poor sleep. But this all leads me to really wonder, what happens in the body and brain after an orgasm? Is this something to do with hormones, blood pressure? Is it something to do with the menstrual cycle? Or is it truly just in my head? Ive tried to research on my own but there aren’t consistent answers.

    This has all led to me not being able to have meaningful sexual relationships with people. This part of me is so difficult to explain. I feel ashamed. I’m scared to connect to people, and not ready to give up on sex entirely.

    I’d love to know if anyone else here has the same symptoms and what you’ve observed. I’m sorry if this is the wrong place to post this, just let me know.


    Hi Zinedreamer, and welcome to the forums! This is a really interesting question that I’ve often wondered about myself. I have noticed that when I have orgasms with a man that I often have the desire to cry afterward. Not because I’m hurt or in pain or anything, but because it seems to shake loose some buried feelings like sadness. It has happened more with other partners than others, but I think there is definitely a series of emotional reactions we go through when we have an orgasm. I know there’s some brain chemicals that get released (especially the ones that bond you to your sexual partner, which is often why people “get attached” if they sleep together) and I bet there are other effects like the one you describe for other people as well.

    I think part of what can make sex really complicated and card for people, even if they don’t have sexual dysfunction issues, is that sex is intimate and it demands vulnerability to really be an active participant in. When we don’t find ourselves accepted in these vulnerable moments, it can create mental blocks in sexual situations and prevent us from connecting meaningfully to partners in the future.

    If you haven’t seen a therapist about these feelings before, you might consider it – I see a therapist regularly and it helps me a lot to deal with these kinds of questions. I am hoping the doctors in the forum have more insights into why this can happen, but don’t lose hope! Connection is always possible and you should never stop looking for it.

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