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!
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.