Welcome to Day 4 of the couples with kids bootcamp! Just now joining us? Here is a link to start at the beginning!
After kids we have A LOT of pressure to try and maintain our sanity AND a good sex life, because we hear all the stories of what happens to people who let it slide. You know, the lack luster and boring relationship, the affair scandals, the eventual drifting away from one another- those scenarios are front and center in our minds when we realize that yet another day/week/month has gone by without time together naked and alone.
Sex is important, but just like with anything else, when we feel like we HAVE to do it, the thrill of it disappears. Quick. So instead of looking at the idea of romance, intimacy and sex as a chore that we are failing to live up to, let’s work on shifting our thinking.
First off it’s important to know there is no RIGHT amount of sex you should be having. This is completely up to you both as a couple. Some partners feel most satisfied doing it multiple times a week, while others are happy to frolic in the sheets every couple weeks. The most important thing is that you banish what you think you should be doing, and figure out what works for both of you instead.
Sex faces a lot of challenges once you have kids. Here are the top reasons I hear most often about why couples aren’t having sex after kids.
- I’m/ we are just exhausted by the time the kids are asleep
- I’m not comfortable with my body after kids
- My hormones have affected my desire
- Our bed has kids in it now, and we don’t have the space for sex anymore
- I’m constantly upset/resentful at my partner, the last thing I want to do is have sex with them
These are real problems, some have solutions that are easier than others. But difficult doesn’t mean impossible.
SO here’s your task:
- Re-scan that list. What pops out for each one of you? If your reasons aren’t listed, go on ahead and write it down.
- Are your reasons mostly logistical ( tired/ lack of space) or emotional ( not comfortable with body/ upset with partner)?
- If it’s logistical this is a good time to problem solve. Remember, you both WANT to have sex (banish the word “SHOULD”). Talk about solutions. Maybe instead of relying on your same old mattress to have sex, you find new areas of your house to get jiggy. Or if you’re tired after the kids are asleep can you find a time not at night for sex? Get fun, get creative. Remember how creative you were when you first started having sex together- NOTHING got in your way.
- If it’s emotional, that’s a good indicator that working on the relationship outside of the bedroom is what will help get things going again. Body image issues are extremely common (especially with women, but men struggle too). Enlisting your partners help to feel desired again can be huge. Hormones can be definite challenges to desire, but that may mean spending more time on all the foreplay that takes place both inside and outside the bedroom.
- If resentment is the main factor this is a good place to start a conversation about your needs and wants in the relationship. Resentment happens when we feel like our needs/wants are not being met. This can get tricky, depending on how resentful both partners are. You both may be able to enact some positive changes with self-help books . If you find that you can’t get through this exercise without arguing you may consider enlisting even more support like relationship therapy.
- Spend some time talking about how you would like to see your sex life evolve for the better. What is a frequency you would like to aim for? Remember, you’re not setting a task- you’re setting an intention for something that you really want to happen.
Remember, desire is something that needs constant care and just because you’re in a drought now, doesn’t mean that your sex life can’t be lush and fruitful once again.
See you tomorrow!
Want to know more about who I am and what my experience is working with couples? Please check my about me page here!