Intimacy after baby can sometimes be an afterthought. You and your love have made the leap into parenting. You both agree your little one is THE MOST adorable of them all. Your hearts and lives are forever changed. Something else may also be different. Something you’ve heard about, but thought would NEVER be an issue for your relationship. That something is sex.
How did this happen? Why? And will you have to consider the dreaded “planned sex date night?”
Why Might this be Happening?
Let’s start with a bit of science. For women, interest in intimacy after baby can return 1-3 months post-delivery, but it’s normal for it to take longer, according to the Australian Parenting Website.
Reasons for this can vary and include lack of sleep, hormones, and feelings of overwhelm, just to mention a few. There are also medical recommendations to follow, and most couples are given a period of time to wait for the physical health and safety of the new mom.
Sometimes parents feel so engaged with their babies and busy adjusting to life with a little one that they find themselves with less interest and energy for intimacy. When that is the case, it’s perfectly fine to navigate this season slowly and move back into the groove when the feeling is right.
There are of course times when one person is more ready than the other. I will address that in another blog. Know that there are many solutions to this that feel good for both parties.
What about the times when both partners want that spice back, but find themselves struggling to make it happen? I see many clients in the throes of this dilemma. There is good news here. This is very COMMON, and solutions are numerous.
Bringing that Sexy Back
Here are some of the things others have found helpful. Feel free to try any or all of these gentle suggestions to see which are a good fit for YOU and your relationship.
- Start small. Spend time in bed snuggling, sans pajamas. No need to take things further. Intimacy is about far more than just the act of sex.
- Try something new. Maybe order a game online or go to your local sexy store together on a date. Use this as a chance to get to know each other in new ways.
- Leave the pressure on the doorstep. Spending extra time in a hug, looking into each other’s eyes, or even just holding hands more often “counts” as intimacy.
- Do the thing. Set a date and follow through. Yes, it may sound cheesy, but consider it a small season in your life, and the benefits to getting back in the game definitely outweigh any worries your brain has about what scheduling sex says about you.
- Ask for help. If what you both need is a break from that adorable miracle of yours, ask someone to take them off your hands for a bit. Trust me – LOTS of people WANT to watch your little one and it will be GOOD for them.
Rediscovering Intimacy after Baby
Don’t be afraid to see a therapist who specializes in these things. They can work with you around your personal goals and challenges to navigate intimacy after baby. Things could end up even BETTER than before.
If and when you and your love are ready for a little extra guidance, schedule a session with one of our experts at Emery. You and your partner have come a long way, and you have a lot of experience and strength to draw from. Give yourself some credit, and go enjoy yourselves!