Post-partum Sex? 8 weeks isn’t long enough!

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We’re all moms. We all let that modesty fly out the window during labor and delivery for darn good reason. So let’s not be shy when it comes to sex, before or after baby.

There is one thing that got you into that labor situation: SEX.

Trying for that first baby is often filled with giddy flirting and genuinely fun sex. If conception is delayed, it becomes a chore, but hey it’s still sex! Or maybe you used in-vitro to conceive – go you! No matter how you got there eventually, there was some point when the sex was probably amazing (or at least fun after date night and a couple of mojitos, right?). And then baby happens. Amazing, sweet, soft baby – all hearts and roses!

Only 1 week in, we are still hearts and roses here…

If you had a vaginal birth, you know that things down there won’t be quite the same, but you can deal. In my case, after healing up from a mild to moderate tear after the birth of my son, Cooper, I went in to see my midwife for the usual 6-week check.  I had just a couple stitches, not too bad in comparison to lots of women I have known.

Me: “It still feels kind of …um, thick.”

Her: “Oh ya, that’s just the scar tissue formation.  You’ll just have to bust through that when you guys have sex for a while.” 

Me: WHAT?! Excuse me? Scar tissue…really?  Once the stitches dissolve there is scar tissue and I have to “bust through it” when we start having sex again.  WHAT???

I. Was. Dumbfounded. I have a medical background, all this knowledge, have delivered lots of babies during rotations and advised women on postpartum care. I had done a zillion hours of research and I had never come across (or paid attention to) the fact that I may have SCAR TISSUE in the walls of my VAGINA after this baby. OK.  I’m over it, I promise…I was just not cool with this little-known fact that delayed having sex for the first time after baby, until about 8 weeks (so they say). Ha! 8 weeks was a joke, the darn thing wouldn’t even get close to fitting in, and I was in serious pain just trying.  

So, scratch 8 weeks, let’s try again at 12 weeks…

This time I got smart and had probably a bottle of wine before attempting this little game we call sex again.  Wincing in pain, then tears, then “nevermind I can’t do this”.

This saga continues for a few more months…

Wine…lube…courage…tears…frustration…blue…you get the point. It took me 6 months to ‘break through‘ that scar tissue and to not be in serious pain and another 6 months to start relaxing and go with the flow (which helps too!).

The good news? Now we are pretty great! Cooper is 15 months old and I don’t even think twice about having sex. I am thankful my husband is patient and kind.

If you’re living the post-partum sex saga, I’d love to share a few tips!  I desperately hope your recovery is amazingly easy, but in case it’s not:

1.) Don’t skimp on the wine.

2.) Don’t skimp on the lube.

3.) Tell him if he moves a muscle, he dies.  You get to make all the moves here.

 

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I’m the most extroverted introvert you’ll ever met. I’m happiest curled up reading and not talking to anyone. But, find immense reward in taking BOLD chances. My background is as a physician - I am a hardcore science nerd, spending my former years attending medical school and being all things “doctor.” Then I traveled the country with my husband being an official baseball wife - which is hilariously not glamorous. Once back in Dayton, spent a few years as a personal trainer working with clients suffering from cancer, chronic illness, and the “I can’t do it syndrome.” In 2014 I co-founded Kate’s Plate, which is a healthy cooking service here to transform lives and the way we do family dinner. Also, I am the ‘CEO’ of Beyond The Game Sports Training, my hubby’s sports facility, and teach healthy cooking classes at Dororthy Lane Market’s Culinary Center. I very much struggle to switch modes from balls-out entrepreneur to gentle mommy mode on the daily. My son, Cooper, is 1 and a spitting image of his father, Jeff. He is obsessed with his grandpa and has the darndest little smirk. Jeff and I are Centerville natives, and came back here to plant our roots and give back to the place who made us who we are today. Random facts: I hate to shop, I eat a lot of butter, I'm a hippie at heart, I’ve taken flying lessons, I don’t watch TV or do Pinterest (gasp!!) Favorite things about being motherhood: Nursing (calorie burning bonus, hello!), watching daddy make the kid laugh so hard he can barely breathe, and the way the moments of parenting bring me back down to earth, back to the here and now

7 COMMENTS

  1. Umm… this my be my favorite blog ever!!! Thanks for being so honest on what can be such a ‘taboo’ topic!

  2. It’s just the truth :/. I know from talking with my girlfriends – this is not uncommon. Thanks for the support Lisa!

  3. One thing that ladies might want to consider is pelvic floor therapy. It is just a routine part of postpartum care in France and other European countries. While it’s normal for things to be sore and for scar tissue to take a while to heal down there, 6 months is a long time. Physical therapy can really help deal with these issues sooner rather than later. If there was one piece of advice I’d give every mom, it would be to get a pelvic floor PT referral from your doctor first thing after delivery. It helps with sex, lower back pain, incontinence, and many other issues!

    • Wonderful, wonderful advice!!! My stubborn doctor self is highly unlikely to go to PT or get any form of help when I certainly should – its just the truth, docs make the wooooorst patients. I wish someone would have urged me to do so!!! That’ll be on my must suggest to new moms for them to get from their doc. Thank you CS!

  4. Haha! This made my day! Our son is 6 months old now, but this was such a battle for us until recently. Thanks for making such a rough topic so humorous!!

    • Madi,

      I feel ya babe. Such a battle and you want to be rearing to go…but you’re just not even close. I really liked the suggestion from CS above and it may be just the support you need to get some peace in the netherlands. 😉 Happy 6 months to the little guy!

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