It’s eleven in the morning. You’re waking up and something doesn’t feel right: your head is pounding, you feel sad; you just want to pull the blankets over your head and never get out of bed again. What’s happening?
We all know what a hangover feels like – that unpleasant combination of tiredness, dehydration and nausea is one almost all of us have experienced at some point in our lives. It makes us declare ‘never again!’ to our friends the next day, as we’re downing coffee (or Berocca.) And then as soon as the opportunity arises, we’re back out there again having fun. That’s how it works for me, anyway.
Sometimes I see my clients in such a headspace, and it’s not always about drinking. As I’m getting ready to leave a booking I’ll notice sadness about them, or hear about it the next day when we exchange post-booking emails. Sometimes I discuss it with new clients, who describe feeling down the day after seeing someone new. There’s more than one type of hangover. Here are the most common…
The regular (drinking) hangover
Do your kidneys hurt? Got a headache? Feeling tired? Did you drink a lot last night, and have a lot of sweaty, energetic sex? You may have a regular old hangover. Drink lots of water and take your vitamins! You’ll feel an improvement within hours.
Although it’s common to want to have a few drinks to steady the nerves before a big date, sometimes the experience can be more fun when you’re closer to sober. Maybe consider how many might be too many, next time you’re in the same situation?
The sex hangover
Feeling grumpy? Depressed? Wondering if you performed well, or feeling more alone than ever? Relax…you didn’t make a terrible mistake. It’s probably just a sex hangover.
When we have sex, our brains release all sorts of fun chemicals: oxytocin, dopamine, and seratonin. This is the stuff that makes us feel good when we’re close to someone we’re attracted to. Unfortunately, the high doesn’t last forever. Your brain might start running out of happy chemicals anywhere a day or two later. The more intense the feelings, the more likely you’ll suffer an emotional crash.
If this happens to you, understand that it’s just a normal part of having an exciting experience. It doesn’t necessarily mean you’ve done anything wrong. Rest, light exercise, and healthy food are all good ways to help your brain get back to normal.
The adventure hangover
Sometimes the day-after blues are even more overwhelming – you might be feeling ashamed or confused, even though you haven’d done anything wrong. If a new, intense experience – such as seeing an escort for the first time, or trying a new sexual kink – leaves you feeling distressed, you might be suffering from the ‘adventure hangover.’
Trying new things means getting out of your comfort zone. We’re always being told to ‘step out of your comfort zone’, as though we’re not living unless we’re continually pushing ourselves to be adventurous. But we also need balance. Not only do we need time inside our ‘comfort zones’ to recharge, there is also the possibility of stepping too far out. When we move beyond what is familiar we often feel exposed and vulnerable.
What happens when we step too far out? This is the ‘adventure hangover’, the negative feelings that happen when you’ve gone and done something ‘crazy’ that challenges you. For a lot of my friends, stepping ‘too far out’ means trying a kink that they haven’t done before, rushing into social situations without the necessary time to prepare, or getting sexual with someone new before trust has been established. For my clients, it could mean meeting an escort for the first time – it can be a scary experience.
And adventure hangover isn’t a sign of failure. In fact, it shows that your body and mind are working as they should, to protect you from experiences that might be too much. Treat it as a learning experience – you may moved faster than your brain was ready for, but you learned something about your limits.
Drink hangover, sex hangover, or adventure hangover? They might feel similar, but each has a different cause . If you’re feeling down the day after your sex work session, it’s worth working out why – and remember not to add to your suffering by giving yourself a hard time. This stuff is normal, and it passes. Look after yourself, so you can move on to your next adventure.