Parenting Sex and Relationships

How to Have a Hot and Healthy Post-Baby Sex Life

Let’s face it: while you may or may not have had a thriving sex life before the birth of your child, once baby comes along sex is often the first thing to go. I mean, most of the time sex is restricted thanks to “doctors’ orders,” but between the sleepless nights, leaky breasts, disposable panties and afterbirth, and possible post-op staples or stitches, the desire often disappears with little fanfare or concern. It did for me (and this is coming from someone whose libido increased with her waistband). Sure, things tend to pick back up after that 6-week-checkup (UGH!), but I hate to break it to you: your sex life will never be the same.

That’s not to say you won’t have sex. Oh, no, you will — and if you are anything like me, it will be better because women peak, sexually-speaking, in their 30s. But you also have to get creative, because once your kiddo moves from their crib to a toddler or twin bed — i.e. they are on the move, can open doors, and tend make strange requests from midnight to 2 A.M. — well, sex is a feat indeed.

But don’t fret, my friend. Follow these 4 easy** steps, and you’ll be on your way to sweet, sweet romance.

1. Learn to love locked doors.

While I am a huge proponent of sex in all sorts of places and spaces, once your wee one is on the move, late-night booty calls in the kitchen are off the table. What is on the table is any room that locks (think bedrooms, bathrooms, or — if your kid is old enough — out in the car). Want to get kinky? Try a coat closet, because nothing says sexy like down jackets and zipper-front hoodies.

2. Embrace sex scheduling.

Okay, I hear the outcries now: what is sexy about scheduling sex? When you are the parent of a preschool age kid, everything. You see, everything revolves around schedules with kiddos, and while most schedules are loose (and more like guidelines), everything on the list gets done — well, almost everything. So add sex to your iCalendar, spend the day sexting, and let the anticipation build.

BONUS TIP: Schedule it as early in the day as possible. If you wait until the wee ones are asleep, dishes are done, and the house is sort of clean, you probably won’t want to do anything but sleep. (While I love a good orgasm, I can have one any day, but sleep? There are no guarantees for sleep, and I have to get it when I can!)

3. Call Grandma, Grandpa, an aunt or uncle, or that second cousin once-removed (you know, the one with 5 kids who lives in the sticks and won’t care if one more is added to the mix), and beg for an overnight.

Once the child is gone, the doors are locked, the wine is poured, and your clothes are off, you are scot-free…unless you fall asleep on your husband while watching a Lord of the Rings marathon, your mouth hanging open and an unchewed square of cheddar cheese sitting on your tongue. If so, down the wine, go to bed, and try again tomorrow. And dads, if you find yourself in this position, do NOT wake a sleeping mom for sex under any circumstances. (Seriously. My husband has scars to prove what a bad fucking idea it is.)

4. And, most importantly, lower your expectations.

While two hour sex sessions are amazing (seriously!), they are unrealistic. Hello! Nap time is ONLY two hours long; do you know what else I have to accomplish? There are floors to mop, meals to prep, and showers to be taken. Learn to embrace a different type of foreplay — nothing is sexier than a man Swiffering in a wife-beater and white tube socks — and learn to embrace the quickie. (And if the quickie doesn’t do it for you, gals, try sneaking to the bathroom for a “poop break” while Daddy wrangles the kids, sit on the toilet, and read a sexy story from your phone. It will get you in the mood AND give you a moment to breathe. Just remember to lock the door — i.e. see step 1.)

**NOTE: None of these steps are easy. They require a good deal of foresight and planning, and a whole lot of luck. May the force be with you.