7 Tips For Having Better Sex After Welcoming Your Newborn, Per Experts
ICYDK, “sex while raising a newborn is frequently non-existent,” explains Kayla Lords, a sex expert at Women’s Health Interactive.
And honestly, how could it be otherwise? You’ve got a whole a** baby in your life now, and even if you already have other children, you still have to figure out how to raise *this one* specifically. TL;DR, it’s a big (though rewarding!) time suck—and it really interferes with your sex life!
There’s also the fact that you (or your partner) just gave birth. Odds are you’re adjusting to different hormones, a lack of sleep, healing from the birthing process, lactating (breastfeeding legit temporarily lowers your estrogen), new aches, and more. All of these changes can totally get in the way of feeling sexy, explains Jennifer Klesman, LCSW, a licensed therapist at Cityscape Counseling. Yah know?
“It definitely takes longer than the six weeks we’re often told to truly recover and be ready for sex,” Lords adds. So if you’re not having sex right now, trust that you’re not alone. It’s totally understandable to feel less aroused than normal.
That said, sometimes not having as much sex as you’re used to (even if you don’t necessarily feel like it) can be disconcerting for a relationship. The following are some healthy mindset shifts on the matter, plus what you should know if you want to amp up your sex life post-newborn, per relationship experts.
First, chill TF out.
Above all, it’s important to “give yourself grace and not worry about the amount of sex you’re having right after bringing a newborn home,” Lords says. Yes, you might miss it, but you may also not even think about it for a while because there’s just so much going on. And that’s fine!
Babies aren’t newborns forever!
“Acknowledging that a newborn is only a newborn for a short period of time is important,” Klesman says. AKA, knowing that your life will stabilize to a new normal is important and, most importantly, eventually your sex drive will return.
You’re parents *and* lovers.
“Being mindful of prioritizing the relationship as a romantic couple, rather than just parents, will go a long way,” Klesman says. Not up for being sexual? Try just making time to cuddle and be physically affectionate in smaller and familiar gestures to nurture that connection, Klesman advises.
While it may seem like an unromantic gesture, scheduling sex can actually be super hot and useful when it comes to adding physical intimacy back into your romantic life. “Scheduling sex is important,” Klesman says. The anticipation of sex can draw up excitement and can even be more arousing than more spontaneous sexual moments, she explains.
If you can, find a sitter
If you’re ready to be away from your baby (and it’s okay if you’re not), hire a babysitter or leave your newborn with a trusted family member for a few hours, Lords says. They can come to your house while you grab a romantic dinner or you could even rent a hotel room for a few hours of privacy. Either way, “it’s much easier to get in the mood for sex when you’re not surrounded by the mess in your home or unpaid bills,” Lords says.
Try dual masturbation!
Sometimes you can be simply too exhausted or in pain for partnered sex. Instead, consider being sexual in a simpler way, like masturbating side by side manually or with sex toys, Lords says. “If your partner has the energy that you don’t, maybe they can provide oral sex for you to get off, and they finish later,” Lords says. Get creative and be flexible!
All in all, remember: You can get back to a satisfying sex life on your own timeline. “Sometimes sex has to wait a bit—and sometimes it simply needs to be reimagined,” Lords says. Amen to that!