Hi Is This Normal,
My baby is 10 months old (I also have a 3 year old). I have no interest in anything sexual with my husband and literally cringe sometimes at the thought of kissing him or him touching me. I hate this feeling and want to be attracted to him again. I know it’s me and there’s nothing he’s doing wrong. How can I get “that feeling” back?
Dear No Libido,
Where oh where does our mojo go?! I’m pretty convinced it’s off relaxing somewhere with all the lost socks and misplaced tupperware lids. Probably lounging around in a hammock, having a cocktail, just enjoying this new season of life. But don’t worry. You’re not the only one searching for your mojo. All of our mom-libidos occasionally need a vacay, too. Even sex drives need time off, I suppose. Though it’d sure be nice if they came back, right?
Postpartum dry spells are totally, 100% normal. A lot of women experience a dip in their sex drive after having a baby, and it’s not uncommon to need some time to get back in the saddle. The whys? So many. Postpartum recovery, hormonal fluctuations, breastfeeding, sleep deprivation,exhaustion, stress, you name it. Oftentimes there’s a shift in your immediate priorities. You may feel cleared for sex in the physical sense, but that doesn’t mean that you’re emotionally or mentally ready to dive back in. And that’s OK! More than OK, it’s so, so normal.
My biggest piece of advice for you is to be patient. Give yourself the time. Don’t let guilt push you into something you’re not ready for, OK? Be open with your partner, and communicate how you’re feeling. We all know they’re probably internalizing this as a reflection of themselves, so make sure to amp up your communication game! Let them know what’s happening to alleviate any burgeoning complexes. As your partner they can help support you through this spell. Intimacy comes from more than just sex, and being open and honest with your boo about how you’re feeling can make you feel closer and help you work together to get you back in the game.
As far as getting “that feeling” back, start small. That feeling is about more than the physical act of sex. It’s about connection and intimacy and desire. We get so bogged down with the day-to-day grind of parenthood that it’s easy to lose track of other, equally important relationships in our lives. Put the kids to bed, turn the lights down, and snuggle on the couch for a movie. No funny business, just closeness. Hold hands, lean into each other, and relax. Don’t talk about the kids or work or daycare. Check out of being co-parents, and check in with each other as partners. Especially with a new baby it’s (unfortunately) easy to lose touch with the parts of ourselves and each other that made us fall in love in the first place.
Make sure you’re giving yourself the time and attention YOU need, too. We can be such givers in this life stage—worrying about the needs of our children, our partners, our jobs, our households. But hello, mama! You’re the glue holding it all together. You can’t expect to meet everyone’s needs at all times while neglecting your own! Whatever that “me” time looks like, prioritize it.
Take heart, mama. This vacation won’t be forever. Your struggles are normal. This is normal. Give your body and mind time to get back on track, and in the meantime cut yourself some slack! When your libido finally gets back from its extended vacation, you’ll be glad you did.
A Mama Who Got Her Groove Back,
Is This Normal