Intimacy with your partner is not the first thing on any woman’s mind after she just birth a child. It definitely wasn’t the first thing on my mind. Whether you shoved your child out of your vagina or your doctor yanked him out of your tummy, your libido becomes magically deactivated. For some women, it might have already been on snooze for a little while before birth.
The truth is, after birth, you are on auto-pilot, your survival mode is triggered and your entire focus is on ensuring your child stays alive as you are try to heal and recover from the extreme pain you just went through. You are so focused on protecting this life you created and making sure he survives in the outside world, intimacy is the furthest on your mind.
Intimacy is also a pretty daunting task. There are so many reasons not to do it. All very VERY legitimate reasons, I should add.
You worry about certain flabby and loose skin that may or may not be dangling in your partners face during sex, depending on the position… You worry about certain leakages that you may or may not have control over… You worry about the stretch marks and the scars you now have, many of them very obvious and shiny if you’re a member of the #blackgirlmagic and coconut oil gang…
Your husband could care less though. The man has been on mandatory deprivation for at least 6 weeks and really just wants his wife back.
But you are exhausted! Every second of every day.
Oh, and also, in the next couple of weeks you will barely take showers everyday (speaking from experience). You don’t feel pretty, you probably look a mess most of the time. If your husband is perfect like mine is (#shamelessplug), you know he’s patient and understands and won’t push you. He’s waiting for you to be ready. Which is absolutely hilarious because you know you could possibly go months without.
Fact: your first time having sex after having a child is going to be uncomfortable and awkward at best.
This is why you should absolutely schedule sex with your partner. Seriously!
It doesn’t have to be an elaborate scheduling, unless you’re like me. Something as simple as making a mental note, planning a dinner date, and planning to have someone watch your kid(s) so there are no distractions. You schedule almost everything else, why not this?
Remember, this is as much for you as it is for him. Practice makes perfect. The more you engage in it, the more you want it and more comfortable you get. Whoever says scheduling takes away from the romance may be right but scheduling helps you get your groove back. That’s the goal. Slow but steady wins the race
1. It gives you the opportunity to mentally prepare.
Ever give yourself a pep talk before an interview?, that’s the same idea. Remind yourself that you are beautiful and your body just went through the most beautiful thing any human body could go through. And although you may not feel the sexiest, which is natural (and it is okay to feel that way), you will get there. Remind yourself that your husband absolutely adores you and the magic your body just performed. Also, he doesn’t care.
Mentally prepare yourself to call an audible if need be. You should not feel pressure to continue something you are not comfortable with. A quickie is not the goal here; your goal is to reconnect with your body and your husband and you will most likely need your husband’s help to do that. Go slow. Oh and be prepared to laugh at any casualties.
2. You have the opportunity to prepare yourself physically.
Impromptu intimacy was not going to work for me; at least not in the first weeks after delivering. I am way too self conscious and that’s why scheduling worked for me. I wanted to be clean and smell good. Not smell like breast milk and puke.
If you’ve made plans to be intimate, you have a chance to take a shower, brush your teeth, maybe wear a different pair of panties than the majorly ugly ones you’ve been wearing for efficiency and economic reasons. #ifyouknowyouknow
You also have the chance to create a mood that will make you feel comfortable; go out on a date (think pre-game; eat sushi if you have to, I hear it’s an aphrodisiac), dim or turn off the lights, light a candle, turn some music on. Again, this is for you to feel as comfortable as you possibly can.
3. It gives you the chance to communicate with your husband.
Most marriage counselors will tell you communication is a big part of a successful marriage. When expectations are very clear it makes for a lot less awkward scenarios.
Communicate as much of the above to your husband as you can. Talk to him about your insecurities, let him know what he can expect and what he should definitely not expect. Let him know if you call an audible it has nothing to do with him, you’ve just reached your limit for the night and can’t go further.
This is your first time back. It may not be pretty but it will get better.