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12 Things Every Grown-Ass Dad Can (And Should) Do During Postpartum Sex

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My partner and I have always been very comfortable discussing, exploring, and having sex. I mean, how do you think our son came about? We had sexual chemistry from the very beginning, and we maintained a fairly sexual relationship during the majority of my pregnancy. Which is why, when I felt an aversion to sex after having a baby, I was shocked. Thankfully, there are things every grown-ass dad can do during postpartum sex to make the entire experience more enjoyable, and my partner did those things (often times, without asking. I know, I know. I'm bragging when I really shouldn't because it's all common sense and decency, but still.).

I had a somewhat difficult time feeling at-home in my postpartum body. I was so desperate for body autonomy after a seemingly never-ending, traumatic pregnancy, that it didn't even remotely hit me that I still wouldn't gain completely control over my postpartum body, either. Not right away, that is. I was breastfeeding on demand, co-sleeping with my son and having constant, physical contact from a tiny human at all hours of the day and night. While that human was adorable, I yearned for my space, which made any advances from my partner, you know, unwanted. While I was looking forward to feeling close and getting intimate with my partner again, I was exhausted, sore, trying to rediscover my body and feeling touched out. That doesn't make for a sexy combination, you guys.

That's where you can come in, fellas. Yes, I'm talking to you, dear gentlemen readers. While you weren't pregnant, didn't experience labor and didn't go through the painstaking but ultimately amazing act of birthing your baby, I'm going to optimistically assume you played a roll in all three. Your work is not done. There are things you can do to help your partner before, during, and after postpartum sex. So, fellas: pay attention.

He Checks In With His Partner Regularly

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When it comes to postpartum sex (and all sex, honestly) it's important that you check in with your partner and not just before the sexy fun times are about to be had. Check in during sex, too. Make sure she's feeling comfortable; make sure she's not in any pain (or too much pain); make sure a specific position is working with her and, if not, if she would like to try something else.

Do you have to turn postpartum sex into a game of twenty questions? Nope. However, the first time your partner has postpartum sex can be scary. Like, super scary, so checking in periodically can be helpful (and sexy, if you don't mind a little dirty talk).

He Refuses To Pressure His Partner Into Having Sex Before She's Ready

This should be common knowledge but, sadly, our society continues to convince men that they're entitled to women's bodies (especially if said woman is their romantic partner). Yeah, you're not.

So, wait patiently for postpartum sex. It's really that easy. If your partner isn't feeling up to it; if she doesn't feel comfortable in her postpartum body yet; if she is exhausted because motherhood is exhausting, don't pressure her and don't guilt her and don't make her feel like she is failing. She isn't. Her body has done an incredible, but very taxing, thing, and you should want to have sex with someone who not only wants to have sex with you, but feels ready to have sex with you.

He Thinks About His Partner...

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This isn't just about you and your sexual desires or your need to feel close to your partner again. Do all of those things matter? Of course. After all, gentlemen, you're part of the relationship and you're a human being. However, it isn't all about you.

Contrary to popular belief, relationships are never an even 50/50 split. Instead, they're varying degrees of percentages that ebb and flow depending on specific situations. After your partner has carried and birthed your baby, she needs more from you than you need from her which means, yes, you will need to give more than 50 percent. Your needs, for the time being, should come secondary to the needs of your postpartum partner, because she's sore and her hormones are fluctuating randomly and she is exhausted. Be a good partner and realize that, for now, you need to think about your partner a little more than you need to think about yourself.

...And Doesn't Make It About Him

Postpartum sex shouldn't simply be about you "getting off" because "it's been so long and you haven't said sex in so long and poor you, you poor somewhat-celibate man, you." Nope.

If you're about to have postpartum sex with your partner, make it worth her while. Make sure she gets off, too. Make sure she is comfortable and actually having a good time. Think beyond yourself, gents.

Compliments. Compliments. Compliments.

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Sure, I guess you could argue that compliments (especially about your partner's body) are shallow, but they do make a difference. After I had my baby, I didn't feel at home in my postpartum body. It took me a while to feel confident and comfortable in my own skin, but the compliments my partner paid me, helped.

Did I always believe him? Nope. In the end, of course, how I view my body is way more important than how anyone else views it. Still, hearing that my partner still found me attractive and sexy and beautiful, helped.

He Lets His Partner Take The Lead

This is a big one, guys, and one that I (honestly) don't think the majority of you fine gentlemen will have a problem with. I mean, you get to sit back, relax, and let your postpartum partner do the "work" so she can dictate the pace, the positions, the depth, and so on and so forth. This will empower your partner to find what works best for her (because things will be somewhat different) and allow her to take things as slow or as fast as she feels comfortable taking them.

He Comes Prepared And Does His Research

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Lube. Lube lube lube lube lube. I can't say it enough. Don't you dare go into that bedroom (or wherever you may be) without some lube. Just don't.

Also, do your research and become knowledgable about women's postpartum bodies, in general. Yes, every woman's body is different and your partner may be experiencing postpartum differently, but if you know what is going on with her body, you will be better positioned to please it once it's time to have sex. I know you fine gentlemen understand how to use computers and that fancy little search engine called Google, so have at it.

He Refuses To Compare Postpartum Sex To Pregnancy Sex

There's honestly no need to play the comparison game. Chances are, your partner is a little self-conscious about the changes her body has experienced (and is still experiencing) and she's afraid that sex just won't be the same.

So don't compare (unless you're going to say postpartum sex is ten times better than anything you've ever experience, in which case, be my guest).

He Takes His Time

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There's no need to rush (even if there's a baby in another room, close by). Things are still going to be sore so you need to take your time and let your partner tell you when to go fast or slow or stop or start or anything else she may or may not need in order to make postpartum sex enjoyable, and not painful.

If His Partner Asks, He Stops Right Away (Because Consent)

This should be a rule, regardless and always. When someone says "stop," you stop. It's that simple. No questions. No exceptions. No arguments or debates. If your partner says to stop doing whatever it is you're doing, you stop doing whatever it is you're doing. Immediately.

He Doesn't Position Postpartum Sex As A Necessity

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Your partner has enough on her plate, without the added pressure of sex. Maybe she wants to have sex just as badly as you do, and she's making it a priority. That's awesome. However, if she is exhausted and overwhelmed with breastfeeding and work or learning more about her role as a stay-at-home mom, don't tack on "have sex with your partner," to her endless list of things she feels she absolutely needs to do. Sex should never feel like an obligation. Postpartum is a monumental, transitional time in any woman's life and you should be supportive, not another source of stress.

There are others ways you can connect with your partner after you both have a baby. Don't put all of your intimate eggs into one sex basket.

He Refuses To Take It Personally If It Wasn't Enjoyable, Didn't Go Well Or His Partner Doesn't Want To Try Again For A While

At the end of the day, this just isn't about you. If your partner isn't into postpartum sex, it's not because you're suddenly not attractive to her or she hates you now or anything even remotely about you (I'm assuming. I mean, I guess there's a chance some of those things could be true because I don't know your life, but that's highly unlikely). For most women, the aversion to sex after they have a baby comes at the hands of relentless hormones, horrific sleep deprivation and a new body they're discovering for the first time.

Give your partner time. Be supportive. Be understanding. That's the best thing you can do for your partner when it comes to postpartum sex.