One of the most tenuous and stressful times in a couple’s sex life is the period following the birth of a new child. Not only is everyone exhausted from the demands of an infant, but other biological forces may be acting on her sex drive and providing a minefield of stumbling blocks to sexual intimacy. You may be concerned about birth control, or breast milk may be tripping you up. She may be worried about pain, or having difficulty with natural lubrication. Whatever worries plague your post-partum love life, you are already on the path to reviving your sex life after this incredible life change. Follow these simple steps and find your way back to your lover for life!
How long will it take? When is she ready? What if she just isn’t into it? These questions plague just about every new father, and the answers can be complicated. Most doctors and midwives recommend at least two weeks after birth before engaging in any kind of intercourse. Of course, this doesn’t mean you should just ignore your wife for two weeks while you wait! She will probably want the loving comfort of your arms at the end of a long day, even if only to curl up and fall asleep for a few short hours.
How long it takes for your lover’s body to heal and return to a state of desire and comfort depends quite a bit on the trauma involved in her labor. If there was any tearing or cutting of the perineum involved in the birth, you will be looking at anywhere from three to six weeks before any kind of penetration is comfortable and safe. Even when she is fully healed, the exhaustion and emotional upheaval of birth may leave her feeling less than in the mood.
The most important thing for you to remember during this brief period of recovery is to continue giving her loving physical and emotional support without the pressure of sex. Be sure you let her know when you touch her lovingly and give her the hugs and kisses which comfort her at the end of the day, that you understand her feelings, want to listen to her experiences, and do not expect sex. Sometimes hearing this is all a woman needs to begin opening back up to her sexual self – a completely pressure-free environment.
What’s Breast Milk Got to Do With It?
You may discover that one of the weirdest things you have to deal with getting back to a regular sex life is breast milk. Not only does the act of breastfeeding change your lover’s entire hormone profile, inhibiting lubrication, preventing ovulation, and often also creating strange sensations that may cause some emotional upheaval.
While the breasts provide an obvious function of nourishment, they are also a hotbed of erotic tissue. Many women experience pleasurable feelings and may even experience orgasm during breastfeed, something that a lot of women find shameful and don’t have an outlet to discuss. Your lover may be sore and not have any desire for breast play with you, or she may have feelings of guilt or shame involved with “breast multitasking”. Breast milk is nothing to be afraid of, and neither is the pleasure it brings. These feelings encourage the release of hormones into the body which strengthen the emotional bond between mother and child, and between parents. You may even find that if your partner has trouble getting her milk to flow, that some stimulation on your part may actually help to increase her production and reduces any pain that might be involved.
Most importantly, if you don’t want to rely on breastfeeding for birth control, be sure to choose a non-hormonal alternative birth control, like condoms, a diaphragm, or an IUD. Hormones can be transmitted to the infant through breast milk, along with just about anything else that your lover ingests, so be aware.
Get Ready for It…
The most important things to remember when you’re ready to get back into sex are lubrication and loosening up! Use liberal amounts of a safe, appropriate lube to help keep that friction pleasurable… and warm up to intercourse. If it has been weeks, or months, since your last sexual encounter together, don’t go overboard to make up for lost time.
If this was your lover’s first birth, the physical changes and hormones involved in the process can dramatically alter a woman’s sexual desire, sensation, and overall sexual experience. Encourage her to be open and honest with you about how she feels. Tried and true methods of turning her on or getting her off might not work at all anymore, so you may need to go right back to the drawing. Instead of lamenting being back at the starting line, relish in the experience of learning what your lover wants all over again.