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Sex After Birth: “It Was Uncomfortable And Unenjoyable”

When I was pregnant with our son, I didn’t once think about what sex after birth would look like. I just knew my husband and I would be able to continue on as we had. Now, we’re two kids in and actually know the realities of intimacy after baby has come home.

For me this was two-fold: the first time we had sex after delivery and then the struggle it can be to prioritize sex as you settle into parenthood. After waiting the prescribed six weeks following childbirth, the sex was kind of awkward — I wanted my husband so bad, but I was still adjusting to the changes my body recently went through. The second go of it was much better. What we soon learned was that if we didn’t make a conscious effort, sex very easily ended up on the back-burner. Also, daytime sex is way better for us because 1. It’s exciting and 2. We’re not exhausted after long days and even longer nights of trying to get the kids to fall asleep. Below other moms share about their experiences and how their sex lives have changed after kids.

1. I remember sex after baby number one being scary, uncomfortable, and almost unenjoyable for a little while.

I had a hard time being vulnerable — I felt like my body had changed so much in such a short amount of time. I didn’t feel sexy anymore. Needless to say that didn’t stop us from having another baby and sex after the second one went back to normal pretty quickly. I don’t know if it was because the ‘scariness’ wore off or if I was just immune to it at that point, but it didn’t seem as traumatic the second time around.

2. Well getting pregnant after three months of giving birth says it all, ha!

I wanted it even if it meant at 3am. Not a good idea when both you and your partner are more asleep then awake. After baby number two it’s been a bit harder to have sex as often as we would like. We are both so exhausted and with our second being so close in age… It’s now a choice of: do we sleep more or have sex. We continue to have an active sex life, but now we have to wait until the babies are asleep and take care of their needs first since they are still so little.

3. What I’ve learned is to get it where and when you can.

…But seriously the most that’s changed is definitely finding the time to get intimate!

4. I think the best piece of advice I got was to just keep making it a priority.

If possible increase the frequency, because the less you have sex the more pressure you’ll put on yourself and your partner when you finally can do it. There is nothing wrong with a quickie!

5. Before kids my husband and I had a very healthy sex life (three to five times a week and sometime twice in one day).

Even during my first pregnancy we still had time for bedroom fun. I really didn’t know what to expect in regards to our sex life after my son was born. All I knew is that things would possibly change, but there wasn’t much thought about that. Once I had my son we got back to business three weeks postpartum, but it was not because I wanted to. It was more about keeping him happy. I definitely did not feel like myself. I was tired, emotional, and physically not attracted to myself. I was self-conscious about my boobs leaking milk and whether it would feel the same to him as before. I wondered whether it would hurt me or if the baby would wake up. After I went back to work, sex became nonexistent. We probably have fun about once a week and it has caused a strain in our marriage.

Sex after birth: moms share experience.

6. Sex for us has definitely changed.

You lose some of the spontaneity and frequency if you allow the kiddos to sleep with you. Being creative is key! I can’t give away all of the secrets, but we take advantage of the unused room in our home.

7. If you asked me a few months ago I would say what sex life?!

But it’s gotten so much better — like better than before kids! I think seeing my husband gain confidence as a person and be such an amazing dad is a big turn on. We also flirt all day when we are apart, so we’re pretty much ready to go by the time the kids fall asleep.

8. Between busy careers and having young kids, sex is sometimes the last thing on our minds.

When we realize two to three weeks have passed where we haven’t been intimate, we make time for it. Don’t get me wrong, I love my husband and he still turns me on. But I think when you let that much time pass it can feel like you’re going through the motions, just to get it done.

9. When I was cleared at six weeks, we tried. It wasn’t fun.

Honestly, it took five months postpartum for my body to feel okay sexually. Not to mention, I wasn’t happy with my body physically so that probably didn’t help my confidence. It takes time. Take things slow. Like everything about motherhood, this part of your life changes.

10. Sex after childbirth has been way better than it was before!

I don’t know what the difference is… it could be that physically my body has changed and opened up so it doesn’t hurt as much. Also I can feel certain things now and am way more in tune with my body from being pregnant. I feel more connected to my husband — there’s more passion and love there.

11. Through my first pregnancy and the postpartum months that followed, sex was the absolute last thing on my mind.

Between my rapidly changing body, constant aches and pains, and pure exhaustion, I couldn’t find the time or desire for intimacy. Thankfully my husband showed me patience and compassion until I was ready. His loving, laid-back nature, coupled with my ability to log some “me time” hours at the gym, pushed my libido into gear. Now, after giving birth to baby number two, I’m more than ready to get the green light from my OB at my six week visit. I think it’s important for you and your partner to acknowledge that pregnancy and childbirth are traumatic — give your body and mind the grace they need. You’ll get your groove back soon enough!

12. We had gotten into a rut of having late-night sex, where we were both too tired to be fully committed and present.

However, that all changed one afternoon when I basically jumped my husband. The kids were in the living room watching a movie, and I saw the gleaming window of opportunity and took it. We ended up having sex twice that day and then once more the following day. We haven’t done that since BEFORE we had kids. It was fun, spontaneous, and brought back those feelings of closeness and intimacy that have been missing for a while now. Since then, we’ve tried to incorporate more of that.

Ravelle Worthington is a wife, momma of three, and the founder of Mommy Brain. Follow her on Instagram here.
Join the Mommy Brain private community where members can have open and honest discussions about all the parts of motherhood, whether that’s parent/child-related, self-care, life after becoming a mom, divorce, career changes, intimacy with your partner — there are many layers to who we are as women and as mothers. This is the space to talk about it all!
By Mommy Brain, May 14, 2019
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