After having a baby, you make a lot of adjustments. Sleeping more than three hours at a time is something you now compare to winning the Powerball and being able to leave the house without spit-up on your shirt is a major accomplishment. As you're adapting to this new way of life and learning what things will never be the same, the topic of getting busy will likely come up. Although you may have some concerns about what that will be like, make sure you know which information are myths about sex after kids and which are facts.
Every woman has a desire to get back in the groove at a different point, postpartum. But whether you're urges return at two weeks, two months, or long after that, it's important to know the facts about what sex after birth may be like. Don't be discouraged if sex doesn't seem the same right away, it may take time to get back to the sex you and your partner enjoyed prekids. This doesn't mean anything is wrong with you, like some myths are designed to make you think. Understanding what is happening with your body in this phase is the first step in unpacking why postpartum sex myths are so bogus.
Not sure if something you've heard about sex after baby is true or false? Take a look at these common myths, then pretend you never knew they existed.
Myth 1: Breastfeeding Is Nature's Birth Control
It's a widespread belief that the absence of a period means a woman cannot get pregnant, but when it comes to lactating mothers, this is not the case. Parenting cleared up this myth by reporting that women are still able to ovulate while breastfeeding, even before their period returns. If you don't want to become pregnant, cover all your bases and use a form of birth control while breastfeeding.
Myth #2: It Will Be Painful
The fear of sex being painful after giving birth may keep women from wanting to take a twist in the sheets. To minimize the pain, Women's Health recommended you wait on postpartum sex until your body has healed. Allowing enough time for stitches or tears to heal will allow more freedom and fun in your post baby sex life than trying to jump back into things too soon.
Myth #3: 6 Weeks Is The Standard
The standard red flag to resume sex after baby is the six weeks postpartum, but not everyone is ready at the same time. As What To Expect pointed out on their website, your body has been through many changes, and the desire for sex doesn't magically return at six weeks. Show yourself some grace and know that you will be ready again one day.
Myth #4: Your Vagina Is Not The Same
If you give birth vaginally, it is obvious that your vagina had to stretch so the baby could makes its way out. But the vagina is full of muscles, and muscles don't stay stretched forever, especially if you give it a little work out. Practicing kegel exercises helps strengthen the pelvic floor and return the vaginal muscles to their upright position.
Myth #5: Your Partner Will Be Traumatized By Seeing The Birth
Remember hearing that if a man sees a baby come out of a vagina he won't want anything to do with that vagina any more? Aside from being a sexist old wives tale, it is also not the case more most men. As Psychology Today reported, most men do not desexualize their partner's vagina after witnessing childbirth. While there is a percentage of men who struggle to keep the two separate, the number is very small, and certainly not a universal statement.
Myth #6: Something's Wrong If You Need Lube
Even if your sex drive has come back, your body may not be able to produce vaginal lubrication like it used to. Rest assured, there is no shame in the lube game. According to Parents, postpartum vaginal dryness is common because of hormonal changes, and is a very common occurence for women after giving birth.
Myth #7: You're Going To Be In The Mood Right Away
A slow or absent libido is another calling card of postpartum hormones. Just because you've hit (or passed) the six week mark doesn't mean all systems are go. If your sex drive is a concern for you, Psych Central recommended talking to your doctor about having your hormone levels checked.