Sex After Baby: The REAL Reasons Your Partner’s Sexual Desires Changed

couple being intimateA woman’s sex drive naturally shifts gears after childbirth, greatly affecting the patterns and levels of intimacy experienced between partners. This unexpected change in sexual desire can often cause stress and tension for the husbands and partners who are left wondering, “What happened?”

At least, that’s what was generally assumed by most new moms – but not anymore. A new study, published August 1st in the Journal of Sexual Medicine, suggests that having a child doesn’t just affect the new mom’s cravings for the sex, but her partner’s too!

More than 80% of couples engage in sexual intercourse within the first three months after childbirth.

“The results show that men (heterosexual partners) and women (same-sex- partners) who are in committed relationships with the women who give birth experience highs and lows in sexual desire upon the arrival of the new baby,” according to this article.

“Often times, these changes in sexual desire are linked to social factors, or factors related to raising a child, rather than physical changes from the birth itself.”

This means that breastfeeding and vaginal bleeding are NOT the reasons your partner seems to lack some sexual desire for you post-childbirth.

According to study researcher and Assistant Professor of Psychology and Women's Studies Sari van Anders, “People typically presume that hormonal changes or, more controversially, ‘messy vaginas’ … explain birth mothers’ lack of sexuality, and that co-parents can’t wait to be sexual.”

But breastfeeding and vaginal bleeding (possible excuses for a lack in sexual desire) are actually ranked a lot lower on the study’s list than you might think!

The top common reasons that most partners gave for their “low sexual desire in the post-partum period were: fatigue, stress, too little time and baby’s sleeping habits.”

This study involved 114 partners (mostly men, but also a few women). The questions, which focused on the first three months following the birth of their child, asked them about their levels of sexual desire and the sexual activities they were willing and unwilling to participate in with the new mothers.

Also, one-third of the participants admitted to sexual intercourse and oral sex within the first six weeks, even though it is recommended to wait until after six weeks have past!

What do you think? Did you and your partner wait the recommended six weeks post-childbirth to engage in sexual activities? Are you and your partner currently struggling with post-childbirth sexual intimacy?

 

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Sex After Baby: The REAL Reasons Your Partner’s Sexual Desires Changed

Kimberly Shannon is a wife, a mother, an editor, a writer ... She is always working to find the perfect balance¹! After Kimberly received her bachelor’s degree in Journalism, she worked on two master’s degree programs (Creative Writing, and Marriage and Family Therapy). At various times in her life she has signed up to study Naturopathy, only to back out at the last minute, and humored the idea of returning full-time to the world of dance. Kimberly has also started 10 different children ... More

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13 comments

  1. Profile photo of Kayleigh Kayleigh says:

    My fiancée has been horny as ever since we came home with baby. I had a c-section though so my recommended waiting period was longer. We did engage in some actual activities for his benefit (no penetration) within three weeks. However I still lack desire at 11 weeks out and when we attempted intercourse I was howling in pain within a couple minutes. My new birth control pills have been messing with me big time so that may have some small part of it combined with healing still from the c-section possibly (I was cleared by the doc for sex but who knows I might still be tender in there).

    • Profile photo of Megan KlayEditor Megan Klay says:

      Hi Kayliegh – If you’re nursing your body produces a hormone which naturally decreases your sex drive. My son just turned a year and my sex drive is still low. 🙁 I just try my best to be mindful of my hubby and help out when I think about it. I need to schedule an appointment with my doctor to discuss painful intercourse as well (I also delivered via C-section); let me know if you find anything else out, and good luck!

  2. Profile photo of Ambur Ambur says:

    I’m less than 4 weeks out from giving brith and my libido is back in businesses. We did it 2 weeks after her birth. It was my idea. I totally seduced the Hubby. We would be at it more. It’s just hard to find the time between my baby’s sleeping habbits and my toddler’s sleep scedule. I just feel much more like myself than I have in ages. And ‘ can get physically closer to my Husband. No huge belly in the way.

  3. Profile photo of Bri Bri says:

    My hubby is ready to start on the next one and I haven’t even delivered this one. He wants a boy next and I have to remind him 6 weeks or longer. Just chill out!

  4. We didn’t wait the 6 weeks, not because I wanted to, but my husband wanted to and was getting depressed. Even though I kept telling him that he is still attractive to me and I love him. But because we weren’t doing it, he didn’t feel it. We still have this issue almost 9 months later. I take care of the kiddo all day when he is at work and then all night after the two days I work when the babysitter drops him off. There is only two days that we split the responsibility, but even then it is mostly myself cause he doesn’t know how to handle the screaming like I do or can’t sit on the floor to play as long as I can. I have tried to explain to him that I am exhausted when he gets home, after taking care of our son and cleaning the house. But he doesn’t seem to get it. I know part of it is I am stuck at the house all day while he is working or out with his friends having guys night. I have had only one girls night without the kid, and that was to a movie with my mom. Of course my husband had company over while I had girls night, so he wasn’t taking care of our son alone. Like I do.

  5. Profile photo of Tina Tina says:

    Haven’t had the baby yet, but we will most likely be waiting.

  6. Profile photo of dvmsara dvmsara says:

    I’m about 10 weeks PP and we haven’t had sex yet. Hubby is all for it, but I just don’t have any desire. I feel bad for him, but I’d rather sleep!

  7. Profile photo of cherieanna cherieanna says:

    We waited the six weeks and then my husband continued to wait a few more bc he was afraid he would hurt me.

  8. Profile photo of Julia Julia says:

    We will wait until the 6 weeks are up.

  9. Profile photo of Baby Baby says:

    Just emailed this to my husband!!

  10. Profile photo of Sarakan Sarakan says:

    Will wait for the six weeks to be up for sex, but will be sexual in other ways. Just because sex is out doesn’t mean forpaly has to be to…

  11. Profile photo of Phammom Phammom says:

    We will wait till the doctor gives us the ok

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