“The BVTMB is getting real this week about a sometimes taboo, but important topic…S-E-X! Our team is sharing the good, the bad, and the ugly…and maybe the humorous and kinky too… about sex after kids in hopes that some of you can relate.”
Top Secret: Sex After Kids & What They Didn’t Tell you In Your Childbirth Class
“You can’t have sex for 6 weeks after giving birth”
“What kind of contraceptive do you expect to use?”
“Yes, you can get pregnant while breastfeeding.”
These, and many more, are the things you hear when dealing with sex BEFORE you have children. Sounds like you are going to have sex after babies, so why would you ever think otherwise. Well, what they didn’t tell you, however, was how your sex life as you knew it would change. Sure, we all had those friends who warned you to get your sex on now before the kids were born. But during pregnancy friend advice like “get your sex on” was just another piece of advice that came along with “get your sleep now” or “whatever you do don’t…”
Suffice it to say this type of advice falls on deaf ears. You would think with all those doctors’ appointments, childcare classes, and all that time your caregivers spend worrying about breastfeeding or postpartum depression, someone would think to say this…
“Hey, you are in this together. When you have that baby your life will change in so many unexpected ways. You will test your relationship in ways you didn’t know were possible. You will love your spouse and hate your spouse with all your might at the same time. And about sex… you will try to have sex in 6 weeks like the doctor said, but guess what? It will hurt. A lot. And it will be a long time until you try again. In fact, your sex life, in general, is going to be tested. Sex, as you know it, is over. You will have times that you forget who you are as a couple because you are too busy being parents. And you will need to reinvent your relationship. Trust me, it will be for the better if you remember to try. But you have to try. And you especially have to try to remember to have sex.”
Had we known, we may have asked:
The truth about sex after kids
It’s hard, though not literally (ha), and it’s exhausting. The first year your sex drive in general is so low you may as well be going through menopause. Your hormones are a hot mess and you are so focused on your baby that you forget about the man (or woman) that you are raising your baby with. You are constantly feeling the demands and needs of people around you and even though you may not “feel” your sex drive like you used too, it is there.
During my first year as a mom I think I can count the amount of times we had sex on one hand. After our failed attempt at 6 weeks it was another 6 months until we tried again. I don’t know if it was because I was scared of the pain or if I just didn’t care about sex, but either way there was a detachment to my spouse and it weighed heavy on us. I am so thankful that I have such a patient husband but I could tell he was frustrated. We knew we needed to try harder.
Fast-forward 1.5 years when I got my libido back and BANG: sex drive = baby #2.
So we tried harder, and we got knocked up, and another little miracle came. This time, however, something changed. We were no longer those scared parents we were when our first was born. We were more confident and we were in this together. In fact, we didn’t hate each other this time around! But again, sex suffered. We knew we needed to work harder on our relationship and on our sex life and we hadn’t quite figured that part out. There were other obstacles in the way. For example:
My body is not a wonderland
I try hard to see my flaws as the beauty of childbirth, to accept my body now that I have been through 2 pregnancies. But the reality is I just don’t feel comfortable naked. I’ve always been such a fan of feeling sexy, but being uncomfortable in my skin makes me feel like a schoolgirl wanting the lights out all over again. They may have warned us about stretch marks, that the weight will come off, and that breastfeeding will change your boobs. But what they don’t say is that when the weight comes off, your body is different. You may not ever fit into your pre-pregnancy jeans again because your hips have changed. You may weigh less at some point than you did before you were pregnant but that little belly pouch may always be there as a reminder of your little ones.
Here is the truth:
We are all sexy and we are all beautiful. Our scars are sexy!
While I may not like the way I look naked, my husband does and he still thinks I’m sexy. That is enough. And we have to remind ourselves of that. So maybe the lights stay out, but try hard not to let your insecurities get in the way of the bond of sex (which you so badly need in your relationship)!
Co-sleeping is awesome. Until you want to have sex.
Co-sleeping isn’t for everyone, but for us we were huge proponents of it. That being said we realized that having a baby in bed meant sex in bed was no longer an option for us. We had the choice to not have sex, have sex with the baby in bed, or get creative. Well the first two didn’t sound very fun so we are working on option 3. We can be like college kids all over again, finding our way to the floor, couch, guest room, or even the shower. Don’t let co-sleeping get in the way of your sex life. It is wonderful to snuggle your little ones but at the same time snuggling each other is what made those babies to begin with!
Making time for sex
When all is said and done I think it goes without saying that sex after kids is difficult. But making time for sex is NEVER something you will regret. You only regret not making time for each other. This has been a hard lesson that my husband and I learned over the last few years. We lost each other for a while and while we loved each other we also spent all of our time focused on our kids. We had every excuse in the book and we accepted those and each other for being exhausted. It wasn’t until we realized that our lives were just different, but this didn’t mean our sex life had to be. We made commitments to each other, we schedule “sex-sessions,” and we make sure to go out more often to keep the romance alive.
[…] Photo courtesy of Burlington Vt Moms Blog […]