The Science Of Why You Tell Secrets After Sex



GoodSleep_slide_2ILLUSTRATED BY AMMIEL MENDOZA.
Have you ever spilled a secret while in the sack only to later wonder what compelled you to blurt out that particular fact? Whether you confess to the depth of your feelings a little on the early side or delve into another typically off-limits topic, we've all experienced this tendency.

Over at Nerve, Kate Hakala took a deep look at a recent scientific paper on the subject of pillow talk, or the "post-coital time interval," as the researchers sexily referred to it. What is it that makes us so loose-lipped? It's oxytocin, appropriately called the "cuddle chemical," the same chemical that helps form and strengthen bonds between romantic partners, and mothers and their children. And, though both men and women experience an oxytocin burst after sex, testosterone is thought to dampen the effects. So, it's possible that men are less likely than women to experience this surge of intimacy.

Researchers found that women were more likely to disclose positive secrets than men — stuff along the lines of "I think I'm falling for you," and they were even more likely to disclose positive secrets if they'd had an orgasm. Makes sense.

The combination of oxytocin and secret-telling helps form the bond of trust in a relationship. And, couples already in relationships understandably experienced less regret after divulging their true feelings. Want more on the complexities of post-coital bliss? You can read the rest after the click. (Nerve)