What is Aftercare?
‘Aftercare’ is a term that stems from the BDSM community, however, it is beneficial to all types of sexual activities!
This is not an explanation for the BDSM Aftercare practice, simply how we can take the idea and use it in day-to-day sex.
Traditionally, it can refer to having a cuddle and both of you checking in verbally and making sure you’re feeling okay. However, it can take the form of whatever you and your sexual partner need.
Here are some examples, but of course, it's totally up to you and your partner:
- A little post-sex cuddle.
- Listen to some music together (create a post-sex playlist).
- Get each other snacks and water.
- A de-brief on how the sex went.
- Joint clean-up session.
- Watch some TV.
Whatever you choose remember the main purpose is to increase intimacy and bring you back down to earth in a safe way!
What is Post-Coital Dysphoria?
This is something that can be reduced with a good bit of aftercare!
Whether you feel insecure or a random release of shame, it’s not uncommon to find yourself feeling sad after sex (especially casual arrangements) - and that’s okay, it also has a name!
Post-coital dysphoria refers to feelings of melancholy, anxiety or guilt following sex.
Even if you are having a one-night thing or something casual, it’s still important to look after the other person(s), we all want to feel safe during sex!
How can I discuss Aftercare?
Like with most things in life, sexual or non-sexual it's always good to chat about it. Communication is key and it can sometimes be awkward bringing it up the first time!
One way you could bring up aftercare is simply asking them if they've heard of it! If they haven't it's a great way to discuss it and how it can reduce that not-so-nice feeling some people get afterwards.
Another way could be saying "After sex, especially casual sex, sometimes I feel a bit down if I don't take a minute with my partner to process".
If your partner(s) doesn't respect this, then it's pretty clear they're not the one to be getting sexy with!