As if squeezing out a kid from our nether regions isn’t penance enough, we must suffer through our first few months as a mother with leaky boobs, a sore butthole, and the worst symptom of all, low sex drive. Our little eight pound load is finally lightened, we can sort of fit into our clothes again, (or in my case, my husband’s) and yet we can barely get ourselves back in or on the saddle again thanks to a bit of biology and war-like conditions.
Q. I like sex, or I used to like sex with my husband. Then I got pregnant and the oral stopped. Then I started nursing and found the meaning of painful and dry. Lube hasn’t helped and quite frankly neither has the pause for non-hormonal birth control. I’m uncertain of how I’m going to react given the less than wonderful experiences in the past. Ideas?
Q. I have had almost zero sex drive since my 7 month old DD was born. I am EPing (exclusively pumping) so I am wondering if maybe my sex drive will come back after I stop lactating. Is it normal to have no sex drive while lactating — will my drive come back after I wean from the pump?
I understand that no matter how many times people tell you it never seems to set in but you need to realize that biology is clearly working against you right now. Of course, considering we are the ones that must lug around a child in our uterus and shoot it out our whoo-ha, I guess you could say biology was never really on our side. But basically, your hormones are on crack right now and in order for you to feed your child, your body is suppressing your progesterone levels; any and all fluids you might have had are either being sucked out of you by your tiny baby or leaking into your terribly sexy nursing bra and the only wetness you are feeling is when you accidentally piss yourself because you never did those kegels.
So, you’re dry. Those lips are chapped. But that’s not the only problem.
No matter how much sleep you think you’re getting, chances are you are not getting enough. You can gauge the level of your sleep by the number of dreams. If you’re not having any dreams or you’re being awoken in the middle of hot steamy sex with Johnny Depp, then you’re probably not getting REM at all. And that’s the sleep that actually gives your brain a break. And top that off with a screaming baby that doesn’t seem to understand that the vibrating bouncy seat is the best seat in the house, your waistline that doesn’t seem to want to accommodate anything but a large potato sack, and your vacillating feelings of love, confusion, and total bitterness for what the new moniker of “mom” brings, it’s no wonder that your vagina feels like a bad case of cotton mouth.
If you’re a mother of a son, you’re now dealing with a penis way more than should be humanly allowed. And so to see a daddy-sized hard one waving in your face when you’ve just wiped the under carriage of your own son’s balls about 15 times is not the biggest turn on. But whatever the gender of your baby, you’re probably dealing with conflicting emotions – a new type of love that you’ve never felt before and a transition between roles for both you and your partner.
And to add insult to injury, your spousal unit is one horny bastard and doesn’t get why you don’t want to seduce him with your big old leaky boobies and bloody underpants.
So quite simply, there’s little you can do to combat biology except buy stock in Astroglide and hand towels. So make a trip to the lube section of your local drugstore and be done with it. Then focus on letting go of any guilt you might have about preferring sleep over anything having to do with sex. You’ll have enough chances to experience mind crippling guilt over the next 75 years, so give yourself a break.
Buy your husband a playboy and some Vaseline, paste your picture over all the faces, and go to sleep. If he wants to have sex that involves your vagina as opposed to his hand, he’ll let you sleep, and he’ll do whatever it takes to get you in the mood. And I’m not just talking about the 3-hour hand job. I’m talking about giving you support, encouragement, and help. I get wet just thinking about my husband playing with the kids and folding laundry while I get to put my feet up and relax.
If you’ve gotten some rest and feel a tinge of sexual desire, take it slow and make sure your spousal unit gets that. Be resigned to the fact that you will need lube and your boobs will leak, so living room couch sex is probably not in the cards. Try to set the mood – Lord knows seeing your floppy post-partum belly while trying to keep your nursing bra from opening up in the bright day light only adds insult to injury; pitch black darkness combined with a few glasses of Merlot makes anyone look hot. And nothing says “instant turn off” like a screaming baby, so don’t feel bad or disappointed if your lovemaking is interrupted by your new bundle of joy. Just keep trying – at some point you’ll just get over the crying, your baby will fall asleep, or you will learn to love the quickies.
Once the breastfeeding is over, chances are pretty good that your sex drive and self-lubrication will return. That is until you realize how much of a mood killer having a toddler can be. It’ll take much more than lube and sleep to cure that.