Let’s talk about sex.
Sex now, that you’ve given birth. About your physical body and sex, not about your emotional body and sex.
One thing I’ve done for years is talk to patients about pelvic floor health prenatally and postpartum, with an emphasis on the postpartum recovery phase. With The Mother Love, I talk about sex all the time. I get everything from, "Don't talk about sex with new moms!" To, "I was so horny at three weeks postpartum, I couldn't follow the rules and wait." Every mom has her own story with sex postpartum, but this post is about getting your sex life get back on track.
Now partners, listen up, all moms GET a hall pass when it comes to having intercourse for the first year postpartum.
Intercourse in the initial and extended recovery time can be very painful and traumatizing for women who have had difficult births, episiotomy, extensive vaginal repair, as well as cesarean births. With all births, everything in the pelvis - tissues, muscles, ligaments, bones - gets rearranged and loses flexibility. In order for sex to feel great for both people, you need flexibility internally!
The postpartum body is completely different than pre-pregnant body, forever! I know this doesn’t surprise some of you, but your partners need to know this as well. You and your partner might not fit the same as you did pre-pregnancy. But you can fit again!
Let’s look at how.
Your tissues are malleable - all of them, especially the ones inside your pelvis and vagina. These tissues, just like an athletes body who doesn't take care of it, get bound up postpartum if they are not properly cared for (and your partner can help you on that). What was once a flexible inviting, pleasurable area with a lot of blood flow before kids, turns into a bound up, deeply tense area that doesn’t want a lick of anything nor does it get the same amount of blood flow due to the tension. This lack of inflexibility and blood flow makes sex uncomfortable and often painful.
To have SEX that feels good, you need good blood flow to your vagina, and flexible muscles supporting the uterus. The best specialties that can help you do this work are Pelvic Floor Rehabilitation Physical Therapists. Some things you’ll experience while working with one:
- Whole body repair after pregnancy and birth.
- Tissue Massage.
- Freeing up scar tissue from suturing or surgical repair (super important if you don’t want scar tissue to cling to your abdominal organs).
- They’ll talk to you about using lube. The best kind of lube to use and to insert it inside of you. Yep, good sex postpartum happens when you use a lot of lube - this is because of hormones and tension. Doozie.
- A PT will also do manual vaginal therapy, which sounds crazy, but is crucial for if you ever want to jump on a trampoline EVER again in your life.
- Release in your pelvic region that will prevent chronic lower back pain, hip issues, urinary and bowel issues, as well as uterine issues later in life.
Sex is huge in the developmental phase of a relationship, so if it’s uncomfortable after you’ve become a mom - you have to do something about it. Once tissue and muscle are more flexible, the bones adjust easier and you feel more freedom in your movement and pelvis.
The big deal is I want you to like sex again, and more than just giving blow jobs and getting your partner off, which is the easiest way out of the whole sex debate as new parents. Having a healthy sexual relationship, and GOOD sex again after giving birth is about you; your connection to your partner, to the world, and others; about your self-esteem, and having fun when you have sex. You get all of that again! Do not just write it off, please.
Nobody really knows this stuff, we don’t talk about it. And when we do, it becomes a trending topic on Twitter because of all the snark. Snark away people, we’ll be having great sex when your uterus is on the floor.
A Pelvic Floor PT can get you back in the sac, up on the washer for a quickie, you get the drift…Look one up in your city today, if you have had any issues with sex, peeing your pants, not to mention taking a poop - EW. Pelvic Floor Physical Therapists hold the magic wand. Not literally, well…this is going south now.Happy Valentine’s to all you Mother Lovers. I hope the sex is good, chocolate’s dark, and your heart is the happiest.