Sexless Motherhood – You Are Not Alone

When my body was transforming into motherhood, while carrying another little human, I remember waiting for those sexy hormones to kick in. Those that would get me horny and make me want to have lots of sex during pregnancy – like anyone’s experience on TV or in so many books and articles I read … the problem: it never happened. Not that I didn’t have sex during my pregnancies, but I can definitely count it on my fingers (possibly even on one hand). Then that perfect little human arrived, and things got really messy ... My first time around, it was just straight out overwhelming (all the other times too, in fact, but at least then I knew what was coming). I was exhausted and I was lonely. In retrospect, it probably only took a moment for me to lose myself in motherhood. This beautiful, perfect little baby needed all my love and attention, and that’s what it got. Never mind caring for myself, right?! My relationship? Intimacy? Certainly not. That can wait for later! Except, can it?

Good To Go!?

After about 8 weeks of me giving birth, my gynaecologist told me that I was good to go – her words exactly – and I remember lying on that chair thinking to myself ‘oh gosh, really?!?’. I don’t remember the reasons for the first time I had sex postpartum, but I doubt that it was because I was in the mood for it. What I do remember, is that it was uncomfortable. Not really painful, but definitely not good – but then again, was good ever truly what it was? Everything around it yes, but the actual act?

I do not struggle to orgasm, like none of us do, I was simply lacking the information on how my genitals function and how to actually reach orgasm.

Luck brought me to a physio that actually took hands-on-care of the muscles inside my vagina and released all that tension, but that did not change much on the spectrum of my libido. Or attraction towards my beautiful husband, I may add. Sex was so far off my radar, it literally did not even cross my mind. What was worse, was that somewhere along the line of having kids, I completely lost interest in intimacy, while feeling a deep resentment towards my partner slowly starting to build up. Why was he the only one getting something out of this deal? Surely, I remember thinking, there should be pleasure in this for me too. I blamed him for not getting what I needed – not that I had any idea what that was … My gynae at the time, explained that, unfortunately, some women struggle to orgasm – according to her, it was a common phenomenon –, but that sex can still be pleasurable and that I should simply start using lube and try to see the joy in it without climax. I truly hope that you got better advice than this, should you ever have reached out to a professional for help. Today, I know that what she told me was complete bullsh**. I do not struggle to orgasm, like none of us do, I was simply lacking the information on how my genitals function and how to actually reach orgasm. I wish someone had told me that spontaneous libido is, in fact, one of those misconceptions we are fed and that becoming a parent completely changes one’s (sex) life. I wish someone along the way had explained that the problem was not me or my lacking desire, but actually the kind of sex I was having. Because seriously, how is one supposed to long for something that is not really good? In between caring for a baby (then two, then three) and being exhausted, emotionally drained, completely overwhelmed and so alone … The truth is: NOT AT ALL.

We are not the problem. Neither are our partners. It is the kind of sex we are (not) having. Because, honestly, when was the last time you were craving that incredibly mediocre sandwich? The one with the blandest taste that that makes you feel bloated and uncomfortable and does not even smell that great? The fact that society has managed to engrain in us that we are supposed to long for sex (even though we don’t reach climax, I may add), is simply ridiculous and most certainly not what nature had in mind. Women have the most sophisticated sex organ in the world – an organ entirely and purely there to give us pleasure, nothing else –, yet no one ever tells us about it. We need to know we are getting something out of the deal, to choose to lose out on alone-time or (even worse!) sleep. Because just like we will not choose that mediocre sandwich, if we don’t have to, we will not choose orgasmless intercourse.

Communication and orgasm are the key ingredients to a fulfilling sex-life.

I feel lucky. Not only because I eventually learned about my body and my orgasm and got to turn things around, but also because I have a partner who was willing to walk the path alongside with me. The truth is that it was quite a journey, but the one thing that we learned when finally taking a closer look at our sex life was communication. Uncomfortable communication, at first, but after only a moment we eased into talking about sex like we talk about anything else. And just so I said it, I am still not having mind-blowing sex 4 times a week, because I am still doing life as a mother who is trying to fit it all into one day, but we learned how to navigate and – most importantly – talk about it all. When I have partner-sex these days, I get to enjoy it. I actually choose it over sleep – that, I believe, says it all.

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