Angry sex is when individuals have sex while feeling elevated senses of anger. The anger can be towards the other sexual partner or unrelated. Angry sex can be healthy and not healthy, and it is up to those involved to decide if they are okay with this type of sex and what boundaries need to be set to keep everyone involved feeling safe.
What Is Angry Sex?
Angry sex is when individuals engage in sexual intercourse to express their anger. It is most likely to occur when a person has a buildup of emotions related to their sexual partner, but it can also happen when the anger is not associated with them. Males are more likely to seek angry sex as this can be their way to release their feelings without thinking they need to speak of their emotions.
Angry sex is an exciting activity for some people because it changes up a routine of sex and what to expect when engaging in intercourse with a partner. Many people become excited over this because it means they can try something new while also releasing a build-up of emotions.1
Angry sex may involve:
- Abruptly stopping an argument and becoming physically sexual
- Participating in aggressive sexual activities that aren’t your norm
- Having spontaneous sex after becoming angry about something that is not related to your partner
- Angry communication before sexual activity
- Feelings of escapism from daily frustrations
Angry Sex Vs. Regular Sex
Angry sex is different from regular sex because it requires one or both of the partners to be experiencing anger. The sex itself may be similar or different from a couple’s regular sex, but frequently angry sex means that a person is stepping out of their comfort zone in how they engage in sex and often is more aggressive than a person is used to.
Angry Sex Vs. Makeup Sex
Angry sex and makeup sex overlap, but the key difference is that the result is not always the same. Both angry sex and makeup sex begin because of intense anger or frustration toward one’s partner. When the sex ends and both parties make amends, it can be classified as makeup sex. If no amends or discussion occurs, it would be classified as angry sex.
Why Angry Sex Happens
Angry sex is used as a physical way to resolve tension and frustration between two people. It can be used to resolve relationship conflicts and reconnect and repair after a disagreement between two people. Some people use angry sex as an escape from their painful feelings, including the anger also potentially faced by a partner.
Anger Can Be an Aphrodisiac
Anger causes similar biological reactions as arousal, such as an increased heart rate, blood pressure, and testosterone levels. Therefore, when a person is angry, they may become aroused and engage in angry sex to release the aroused emotions.
Consent & Angry Sex
While consent for all sexual acts is important, it is even more important during angry sex, as angry sex may be wilder or rougher than usual. To ensure that your partner consents to sexual intimacy during angry sex, have a conversation with them to discuss boundaries and safe words beforehand.
Is Angry Sex Healthy?
Angry sex can sometimes be a healthy experience between consenting adults. Both partners must be aware of what type of sexual encounter is taking place and the emotions involved so that there are no surprises. Angry sex should not be the only way anger is expressed in a relationship, and communication about anger after sex is important.
Angry sex with a long-term partner may be healthier than having angry sex with a stranger or acquaintance because it is important to have a more in-depth understanding of one another’s communication styles and boundaries. It is important that both parties feel comfortable at all times during the sexual encounter.3
Benefits of Angry Sex
Angry sex releases the hormones oxytocin, dopamine, and serotonin, which are all key players in assisting a person with feelings of happiness and an elevated mood. Therefore, many individuals may experience a sense of peace after angry sex. If one or both partners are angry about something (not each other), angry sex can still be beneficial to release emotions and chase these hormones.
When Is Angry Sex Unhealthy?
Angry sex is unhealthy when one of the sexual partners experiences sexual coercion, non-consenting pain or emotional discomfort. Additionally, if the angry individual is using sex to avoid feeling angry, they are not addressing emotional feelings, which will become buried and lead to further emotional pain.
Examples of when angry sex may be unhealthy include:
- One of the partners experienced violence as a child
- One of the partners experienced sexual trauma
- If either partner is having difficulty feeling pleasure in this type of sex
- If angry sex is the only type of sex that is had between partners
- When either partner does not communicate their feelings related to anger
How to Practice Healthy Angry Sex
Angry sex can be more intense, which causes some people to experience anxiety, which can negate any of the benefits a person can experience from having angry sex. It is important to make angry sex comfortable. Having angry sex will feel good for this release, and both parties must consent to understand what having sex while angry means.2
Here are six tips on how to practice healthy angry sex:
1. Emphasize Communication
It is vital to have healthy communication before, during, and after angry sex. Partners that have a conversation before angry sex can discuss their feelings going into sexual intimacy rather than a partner assuming they feel differently. In doing this, partners can better understand one another’s mood during sex and meet each other’s needs.
2. Establish Boundaries
The importance of setting boundaries during angry sex comes with the understanding that this interaction might be more aggressive than usual. Angry sex may bring out rougher than usual activities, including bondage, domination, and physical pain. To better understand the limits, partners should establish boundaries before having intercourse. It is important to discuss the comfort level between both partners and know what is to be anticipated and what might be off-limits.
3. Engage in Post-sex Aftercare
After partners have engaged in angry sex, discussion, and closeness are very important. Partners can grow emotional intimacy by discussing what they liked, didn’t like, and what they felt emotionally during the interaction. Taking the time for discussion with one’s partner allows for a deeper understanding of affection and taking time to hear one another’s needs.
4. Focus on Emotional Connection
Taking the time for emotional connection does not just mean the moments of cuddling right after angry sex. Take a moment after sex to pause and discuss what emotional connection is missing from the relationship and where each partner craves this to show up. Partners might discuss what emotional connection means for them and where this might be missing in their daily engagement.
5. Use Safe Words
While boundaries should be set to understand each partner’s limits, it’s also important to have a safe word for when it feels like the limits are being pushed. Establishing a safe word lets both partners know they have control of the moment and that if something is taken too far, they do not have to go through with a moment that might be too uncomfortable for them. Knowing the safe word allows angry sex to feel safe and, in turn, healthy.
6. Know the Time and Place
Having angry sex might sound emotionally riveting and exciting. However, for both partners, it will not always feel that angry sex is accessible or acceptable. Ensuring both parties are aware and comfortable with the time and place for angry sex is key to knowing that both parties feel safe with the act. Discuss when this will take place before engaging in consensual angry sex.
When to Seek Professional Help
A person should consider seeking professional help if they don’t feel capable of addressing their anger outside of sex. Couples who frequently have angry sex instead of discussing the issues that they have with communication can benefit from seeking couples or marriage counseling. Using an online therapist directory is a great starting point for finding a therapist in this specialty.
In My Experience
It is important that angry sex is discussed between those participating in the sexual encounter. Clients who follow the guidelines of checking in before and after sex will likely have a more remarkable outcome for remaining in healthy communication outside of the bedroom and have more pleasure in their emotional and physical interactions. Those seeking treatment for angry sex might consider speaking with a couples clinician to work best on communication and understanding of what each party feels related to emotions of anger that have led to angry sex.