It can happen when you least expect it: after the kids’ birthday party. During the holidays. At a wedding. In the carpool line (true story!). Why do smart women have sex with their soon-to-be ex?
Maybe it’s muscle memory. Or the allure of being with someone who truly knows you. Or perhaps you’re holding on to something you’re not 100% ready to end.
Regardless, as your lawyerly-girlfriend, I’m here to tell you: it’s not a good idea.
Of course, this may be a non-issue. The hanky-panky may have stopped as soon as you separated. Or you haven’t had it in so darn long that this is No. Problem. At. All. Or you might think that sex with him is so unlikely that you’ve got a better chance of being asked to be one of Beyonce’s back up dancers.
But I'm here to tell you, I've seen it happen more than you'd think.
So read on for 3 real reasons to seriously consider NOT having sex with your ex:
1. You may be putting your physical health at risk. This is especially true if you know or strongly suspect that your spouse has already been having sex with someone else. We want you to be a healthy gal, and that starts with your body. Yes, we’re talking about STDs. Even if you were in a monogamous relationship for 20 years, if you’re not now, it’s important to consider this – and protect yourself.
2. It has legal implications you may not like. In some states, sleeping with your ex after finding out about their affair is considered “condonation.” That’s right, if you have sex with your spouse with the knowledge that he or she has been sleeping with another, you may be considered to have forgiven the affair! Also, some state laws won’t allow you to go through a divorce if you’re still having sex. That means you could have to start the legal process all over again. Check with your lawyer to be sure.
3. It can just plain mess you up. Let’s be real. Sex plays with your emotions. And assuming you have no intention of reconciliation, as a lawyer I’ve seen the damage that can be done by adding this layer to one of the most emotionally difficult times of your life.
The bottom line? Whatever you decide, like everything, is ultimately up to you. But my advice is to take the long view. Keeping a clear head and taking care of yourself - and your future – is more important than a short-term fix.