Why do people cry after Sex?

a man crying

Crying after sex, or PCT (post-coital sorrow), is something many people experience. There are many possible causes.

The French word “Tristesse” is for sadness. The disorder could also be referred to as postcoital dysphoria by medical professionals.

Continue reading for more detail on crying after sex, including six possible causes.


Depression is a possible cause of post-sex weeping.

The general expectation is that the people will feel comfortable, satisfied, or happy after a satisfying, consensual sexual feel.

Many say feeling sad, tearful or annoyed, however. Some people may experience agitation, as well.

Sometimes, weeping after sex can also cause difficulties in the relationship. Researchers report that people who keep on physically and emotionally interacting after sex appear to be more happy with their relationships. PCT can interfere with this important time of building a relationship.

A person may weep for several reasons after having sex. Some of these are discussed in detail in the Parts below.


One research from 2019 showed that the predictor most strongly associated with PCT was “present psychological distress”

People with depression, which the participants indicated was the most prevalent mental health condition, were more likely to experience PCT.

If a person has other depression symptoms, they may wish to consider counseling with a mental health practitioner, along with prescribed medication when appropriate. This can help people overcome their problems, which in effect can help prevent PCT.


Crying is a common response to anxiety, and crying after sex can be a response to physical stress release or distress over sexual performance.

One study found that sexual performance anxiety affects about 6–16% of women, and 9–25% of men.

Research has not yet identified the most effective form of anxiety treatment, though cognitive behavioral therapy and carefulness strategies training may be beneficial. Medications that are unique to anxiety can also be helpful.


Sexual intercourse, and especially orgasm, may make people feel much more exposed and vulnerable than they usually would.

This may mean people are more susceptible to memories of difficult experiences or painful ones.

People may not even be aware of those memories until they start emotionally reacting to them. People who have suffered violence of any kind can benefit from working with a professional counselor about their experiences.

Physical discomfort

Physical pain can also make a person weep after having sex.

Dyspareunia is the term used to describe pain during sex. During vaginal penetration, this condition affects about 7.5 percent of women aged 16–74.

The pain may be initially physical or psychological. Some physical causes of this form of malaise include:

  • chronic pain around the vulva and labia
  • bladder conditions
  • muscle spasms
  • scarring
  • pelvic inflammatory disease
  • effects of menopause

Effective treatment is based on the cause of the pain. Some choices might include:

  • steroid creams, for scarring
  • dietary changes and medications, for bladder problems
  • therapies such as massage and meditation, for muscle spasms


Orgasm causes the dopamine and oxytocin levels to decrease, which creates pleasurable sensations. Therefore a decrease in these hormones will cause PCT.

Psychiatrist Mark Shukhman recommends using low-dose naltrexone, a drug that helps to treat opioid and alcohol dependence, to minimize the effect of reductions in dopamine caused by orgasms.

Relationship problems

Crying after sex isn’t necessarily a sign of a relationship trouble, but that could be a factor in PCT. The best way to cope with this is to chat about it for many people.

Opening up will help couples come together and reassure both partners that PCT episodes need not be a reflection of them. It can also make your partner feel supported and cared for by PCT.

Couple therapy will provide support and guidance to all partners as they tackle these problems.


According to one study, 46 percent of women had experienced at least once in their lives weeping after childbirth, while 5 percent had done it just as recently as four weeks before the survey.

Another men’s PCT study found that 41 percent of 1,635 participants had experienced PCT at some point in their lives, while 3.1 percent had experienced PCT regularly.

Although many people do experience PCT, studies have shown that women are 2.87 times more likely to experience it in their lives at some point.


Crying after sex, or PCT, is a sudden, sometimes unexplained sense of sadness, frustration or anxiety.

PCT aren’t uncommon. Apparently it affects a significant amount of people who are sexually active. Counseling, counseling, and drugs sometimes can help people control PCT.


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