Everything you need to know about Sex after birth - What is it like? Will it hurt? Will I be able to orgasm? Will I ever crave it again?
Hey Mamma, we know sex can be such an awkward and uncomfortable not to mention vulnerable at the best of times, but not to worry WE GOT YOU! What to expect and the challenges each mamma may face all here in one place.
ACCEPTING YOUR NEW MUM BODY…..
How do your own feelings about yourself affect you getting vulnerable in front of your partner?
For some it can come easy but for many others it can be challenging to look in the mirror and accept your new body as a whole. Excessive skin, stretch marks, C- section scar, your curves and body shape may look completely different to pre pregnancy. This is normal! So ditch the scales, your body is healing and your hormones are still changing and shifting which will continue to do so up to 6 months and even longer for breastfeeding babies. It’s important to catch yourself from harmful thoughts that take you out of your body and keep you stuck in your head.
Mamma’s if you want to be experiencing great sex after birth instead of the sex that makes you feel yucky after or worse, having sex cause you feel obligated to. Then you need to acknowledge that you don’t have any time for negative energy to be wasted on harmful self body talk. The journey ahead can feel overwhelming and exhausting enough, so lets replace the negative with positive thoughts by Celebrating the changes we see in our body, as a representation of how the body created new life to enter this world - Mamma it’s a miracle. Your sore swollen nipples, breasts that do not sit like they use to or you just dont feel like yourself – Please reframe from these negatives and sing with joy – Your breasts are a sign of your child’s nutritional development.
If you are wondering how long it will take for your body to bounce back or find yourself in comparison with other mamma’s then it’s time to treat yourself at the shops. It’s hard to look in the mirror and experience feelings of disgust, unworthy, not sexy, hate, not good enough when we feel sexy, which looks different for all of us. So when you are in the mirror remind yourself that your body changed over a duration of 9 months, organs had to move to make space for your baby! Your body is still recovering and this can take up to 12 months.
Below are some tips and advice to help you accept your new mum body postpartum.
- Ask yourself what makes me feel sexy?
- Is it purchasing 2-3 new outfits to represent your new identity as a mother?
- Is it treating yourself to the hair salon and changing things up, hair cut, new hair colour or simply a refresh.
- Is it getting your nails done? Have you got support to escape for an hour of self-care
- Is it joining a new gym with a creche, some group class sessions to support the release of endorphins and 1 hour of sanity for yourself?
- Is it spending time with your girls to recharge your batteries without your baby?
Regardless of where you are at postpartum you DESERVE to feel sexy in your new body so be sure to spend some money on what ever it may look like in order for you to feel sexy and confident. Remember to ask family or friends to help out so you can gift yourself that time.
QUESTIONS TO ASK YOUR PARTNER AFTER BIRTH
- Does your partner view you differently now?
- Has your sex drive changed?
- Are you happy with the sex we are having or would you like to invite anything different?
RAW HONESTY CREATES INTIMACY
SELF REFLECTION: How do your own feelings affect you from being vulnerable in front of your partner.? (Share with your partner)
HOW SOON CAN YOU HAVE AN ORGASM AFTER GIVING BIRTH?
It’s important not to engage in penetrative sex if your vagina is still losing blood and healing this can take anywhere from 4-6 weeks for natural births and 6-8 weeks for C section births. You can still enjoy external clitoral hand or vibrator stimulation to enjoy a thrilling orgasm whenever you are ready.
Your healing during postpartum shouldn’t discourage you from wanting to engage in sexual enjoyment. In fact if you were sexually active prior then this may be the perfect time to go back to the basics and explore some high school fun of dry humping which may feel like naughty innocent fun again or perhaps sex that penetrates you energetically instead physically. You will be surprised of what spontaneous sexuality has to offer when you remove physical intercourse.
PAINFUL SEX AFTER BIRTH
Having sex after birth you may experience some tenderness, vaginal dryness, painful intercourse and loss of sensation. Muscle weakness in your abductors, pelvic floor and lower abdominals so if being on top was your go to thing to reach climax and you now find it a challenge, don’t worry mamma your body is still healing. Your muscles have been stretched but will tone up again, you may wish to see a pelvic floor specialist to get some advice. If you are experiencing painful sex deep inside you may have an over active tight/weak pelvic floor. If your cervix being stimulated use to bring you great pleasure and is now painful, keep in mind it is recovering you did just birth a baby so allow your body time to heal…..
VAGINAL DRYNESS DURING SEX AFTER BIRTH
The simple answer to this is your hormones. Shortly after child birth estrogen and progesterone hormones are low resulting in women experiencing vagina dryness. If you are a breastfeeding mamma then your estrogen levels will drop even further to allow the hormone of prolactin to increase to stimulate and initiate milk production. This also allows the body to naturally help you to space pregnancies.
HOW CAN I PREVENT VAGINAL DRYNESS?
The good news is it doesn’t last forever, hormones usually return back to normal within 6 months so you may want to invest in a good lubrication in the mean time prevent pain during sex. The best lubricant that we recommend is YES LUBE because sex should be pleasurable not painful.
WHAT IF I JUST DON’T WANT TO HAVE SEX?
This is so normal and it may be best to ask yourself are you happy with not having sex? If the answer is yes then know that it’s perfectly normal to go through stages were sex is absent. You may be craving more intimacy instead and for everyone that may look different as there are many ways to experience. You have recreational intimacy, spiritual intimacy, intellectual intimacy, physical intimacy cuddles, kisses, holding hands. Intimacy is sparked by actions that make you feel closer to your partner more without sexual intercourse.
So if you were to feel close to your partner, what would that look like? Is it delegating a house chore and sharing load. Does your partner make the bed on the weekends that allows you to feel appreciated as a lover? Would it be going for an afternoon walk and spending quality time together as a family or enjoying a fun activity together as a family outdoors.
It’s also very normal for your body to crave a different type of sex as well, you’re nourishing a new born, sleep deprivation, exhaustion, stress, anxiety, your self care is well out the window in those early months so it is perfectly natural to only want slow sex, gentle caress, loving touch or energetics of sex during this time. If you were more primal or kinky before don’t worry it will come back just allow it some time.
Written by Skye Stevenson
Skye is an Intimacy and Sex Educator, founder of Evolved Lovers. Skye is a somatic bodyworker, workshop facilitator and Mamma lifestyle blogger who has helped hundreds of women and couples feel more confident in the bedroom.