Let’s Talk about Sex, Baby!
Ah, THE question many new mothers (and partners) often wonder about after giving birth. Sure, you’ll visit your doc who will give you the go ahead, or not. But he/she may not have a sit down, one-to-one pep talk with you.
After all, nobody really wants to get naked and talk about sex!
Will sex hurt? Will it be the same? Will I even want to have sex? Will my milk let down? Will we have time? Where do you put the baby? Do I really have to wait six weeks? And how much lube should I invest in?
Firstly, YES, it is important that you wait the full six weeks after giving birth to have sex, otherwise, pain during intercourse is just one of the not-so-great possibilities. At the six week checkup, your doctor or midwife will check your uterus (and talk about birth control). It takes about six to eight weeks for the wound in your uterus, left by the separation of the placenta during birth, to heal. Until then, there is literally an area in your womb that is open and is prone to infection if foreign substances are introduced.
Sorry gals, even your longtime partner’s goods count as “foreign” in this instance.
This is also the reason tampons and menstrual cups are discouraged. Also, believe it or not, you can get pregnant immediately following a baby. Take it from a woman who’s had multiple pregnancies and not a single period for the better part of a decade…Anyway, to the question: will sex hurt?
For some women, yes, sex can be a bit uncomfortable since there is still lingering tenderness. The blood vessels and nerve endings in the perineum have to readjust. Within a few weeks, however, any pain should subside. Believe it or not, sex might change-what was previously your favorite position might be “blah” now and vice versa.
Rest assured, unless there has been some extreme circumstances during your birth (i.e. 4th degree tears), your vagina/labia/other female parts are still fully functional and are just as admirable as they were previously.
If vaginal intercourse doesn’t work, well, there’s other ways of “doing it”.
It’s also normal to wonder what you should do about your newest member of the family while you and your partner attempt to get busy. The human population has survived 5000+ years-meaning, this would be the perfect time for baby to (finally) sit in that bouncy seat, or (finally) explore his crib and nifty mobile. After all, sometimes waiting until baby is asleep isn’t just feasible or attainable!
Sex post-baby is quite the adventure and there are sure to be some events that constitute a new normal…like milk spraying or dripping everywhere! It’s no big deal. Really. It may take some time to get back to it, especially if it is difficult for you to reconcile your changed identity as a former sex goddess turned mom.
For some women, the idea that you can still crave sexual intimacy with your partner and be a fantastic mother, is foreign and can induce feelings of guilt. It doesn’t have to be.
Remember, women are complex humans. If pain or fear or feelings of guilt are impacting your newly restarted sex life, there are a number of resources, beginning with your doctor or midwife, and it is important to discuss these issues with them. Otherwise, get out your favorite lube and get to it!
Side note, coconut oil is amazing used as a lubricant!