It’s perfectly normal and expected to have your sex life dwindle or be put on hold after the birth of a baby. The new mother’s body needs time to heal and recover, both parents are likely exhausted, and most of your energy is focused on the newborn. A period of sexlessness is common for some number of months, or however long the recovery period requires. But once you’ve gotten used to your postpartum routine, take care to rekindle the sexless marriage after the birth of your baby.
To move things in the right direction, turn your attention back to emotional and physical intimacy with your partner. When you and your spouse have a healthy sex life, you reinforce your connection to each other and build the foundation for a strong and supportive family. So how can you rekindle a sexless marriage after a baby? Here are some strategies to help you and your partner reconnect in and outside of the bedroom.
Life Before And After Baby
Typically, at the start of their relationship, couples lead “couple-centered” lives. This involves lots of leisure time, loads of sex, and many pleasurable sensory experiences. You are each other’s priorities and devote much of your time to one another.
After the baby, couples become “child-centered”. Now your child is your top priority. Naturally, you can expect your sex life to change. Lots of attention, time, and energy is spent on the baby. This leaves less time for the parents individually and as a couple. This is normal for a period of time but can become unhealthy if this goes on for too long.
Each relationship is different. Some couples are able to bounce back sooner. Others need more time to recover, especially if there are medical complications or other issues which impact emotional and physical recovery. But what’s important is that you make time for sex in your marriage on whatever timeline works best for you.
2 Effective Ways To Rekindle A Sexless Marriage After Giving Birth
- Intentionally create moments of connection. Plan date nights or do something spontaneous like dancing to your favorite playlist while the baby naps. Aim to go out together at least every other week, for at least 2 hours of uninterrupted time. You can do anything you want during this time as long as it’s dedicated to each other.
Don’t worry if you are not able to find a babysitter, friend, or relative to watch your baby. Babies don’t care where they are as long as they are warm and fed. So bring the baby on a hike, to a restaurant, or an outdoor concert. Most couples need emotional connection before wanting to have sex so focus on first spending quality time together.
- Change your routine to make time for intimacy. You and your partner are probably very tired at the end of the day, and sleep will likely win out over sex (although not for every couple). See if you can carve out time for each other in the morning or during naptime. The first baby brings about the biggest lifestyle changes. After the 2nd or 3rd baby, parents feel more confident and know what to do. The more kids you have, the more planning becomes essential.
Be flexible and keep your sense of humor when things don’t work out. Kids will wake up from naps early. There will be other interruptions and distractions. And that’s OK. Remind yourselves that you’re making an effort and that this phase is temporary. The baby will grow, schedules will change, and circumstances will shift. Just keep trying to reconnect and enjoy the ride along the way.
Women have huge hormone shifts after giving birth. This can lower her libido as well as affect soreness, pain and fatigue. Most healthcare providers recommend that new mothers abstain from sex for 4-6 weeks postpartum regardless of whether you had a vaginal delivery or a C section. During this time, it’s very normal for partners to be out of sync. While one is horny, the other may want to rest or not be touched, and vice versa. While the woman’s body is healing and recovering, consider other forms of physical intimacy besides penetration.
Give each other space to meet your own needs and then get back together during date nights. Just as importantly, give your partner time to meet with friends, go to the gym or engage in hobbies or self-care. Make sure to take turns doing these activities so you can each maintain a sense of self. Taking care of each other by giving yourselves time to rest and refresh will allow you to rekindle your spark. This is part of rebuilding the emotional connection which ultimately leads to reviving physical intimacy. Most importantly and simply, have fun with each other.