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What No One Told Me About Sex After Baby

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Photograph by Twenty20

My husband and I have always had a rather robust sex life. As newlyweds, we’d bump and grind no less than twice per day, as though it was as vital to the nourishment of our marriage as food was to our bodies. It was incredible because we’d dated just long enough to get to know one another’s quirks and kinks—and to still think they were cute.

We still giggled and grinned when unexpected noises escaped our bodies and were rather experimental in the bedroom. We thought nothing could dampen the tantric lifestyle we became accustomed to. I even promised him to never “let myself go,” or to let the flames go out once we had children—a next step I was so desperately excited for that I would have said he could put anything anywhere if we could start trying for a baby.

What a load of crap!

Not only would I NOT want him to flail around just anywhere with that thing, but I wouldn’t want it where it would normally go for quite some time after having our girl. A C-section warrants a bit more recovery time than a vaginal birth, and includes a few stipulations for sexy time I hadn’t considered when the time came for, well, us to come again.

Here are some things I wasn't quite prepared for postpartum.

Libido After Labor

This might just be me, but my desire to do anything short of sleep, eat something warm and poop in peace dissipated after having my daughter. We were given the “go-ahead” at my 8 weeks postpartum checkup and I came home reluctant to tell my husband. I’m fortunate to be able to communicate with him and despite being ready to pounce as soon as we were cleared to do so, we eased back into sex when I was in a better mental space.

Not only would I NOT want him to flail around just anywhere with that thing, but I wouldn’t want it where it would normally go for quite some time after having our girl.

Dryness Post Delivery

Easing back into sex after baby turned out to be the only way we would be able to bump uglies again. Imagine your first time all over again. But in my case, it was with even more deranged hormones, a still-painful healing scar and leaking boobs. What a sensual picture that paints. Fortunately a little lubricant, some creative positions and wearing a bra (which helped because PLEASE for the love of God, DO NOT TOUCH THESE NIPPLES, THEY ARE NO LONGER FOR FUN) helped the process go a lot more smoothly. Trial and error led to something we can laugh about now, but I definitely cried over it then.

Attention Span for Sex

Again, this could just be me, but you know that phenomenon that occurs when you are in the shower and you just KNOW you hear a baby whimpering? It happens for me during sex postpartum, too. I hear the slightest movement and dismount to check on the baby, making what I’d like to be a sprinter’s event into a marathon session that neither of us has the energy for.

Sex postpartum can be a messy landscape to maneuver, literally and figuratively. However, like with most other things new parents go through, communication and understanding—and in this case a little lube, erm, love—helps too.

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