When you are a new mom or your kids are still little, sex can be one more chore to check off the list—kind of like a third shift after all the other duties of life. Resentment easily builds between partners when decreases in sexual frequency follow the birth of a child/children and the frequency never seems to return. Husbands and wives can find this time very challenging to have any room for “us” or sex. Let me help you with that.
First, you are NORMAL. This time of life is bonkers. One of the best things you can do is give yourself permission to “outsource”. That means use your money to give you and your partner space to breath. For example a group of parents can pool resources to have someone come clean or watch a kids for a few hours rotating whose house the kids go to.
Next, advocate for childcare at any events you go to, community, church, school, clubs, even friends having a party. When child care is provided as part of an event more parents can come, AND you can actually enjoy the event. This means just ask about childcare, if there isn’t any, ask why, and what it would take to get some child care. Most of the time it just was not considered important and could easily be added to the event budget. Talk with other parents about adding child care and see if they would also ask about it. If a few parents mention childcare it will be on the radar for events in your community, neighborhood, school, church, and social events.
What does any of this have to do with sex? Everything! Without space in your life to be a whole person, sex is very difficult to care about making time for. So before even thinking about making room for sex, first make room for you. This means you MUST restructure some things in your life and pool resources with other parents so you can be you and not just “mom” all the time. It will amaze you how gaining a few hours a week can recharge you. Think about the main tasks like child care, food, cleaning, laundry that you and your partner manage and think about how to offload (pay someone to clean 2x a month) and or share the load with other parents.
Finally, sex matters. The kind of sex you are having matters more. You should not have just any kind of sex but the kind of sex that YOU like too. This makes it possible to desire sex and also care about making time for it. If you are having a kind of sex that musters a shrug when asked if you like it…that means no. Getting to the right kind of sex takes education, practice, and patience with yourself and your partner. The right kind of sex is the kind that is for both people, not just one person’s pleasure.
Getting to a kind of sex you could enjoy and desire means communicating with your spouse what you like and don’t like. If you don’t know what you like, that is where practice comes in and a good book. Try to read out loud with your partner a few minutes a few times a week, chapter two and three of “The Celebration of Sex” by Dr. Doug Rosenau. Another good book is “The Married Guys Guide to Great Sex” by Cliff and Joyce Penner. Check these out. They will help. Sex is not just for your husband, it is for you too. It will be a while until sex is the kind of sex you would like too.
Sex is learned, no one is born knowing how to do it. You have to help teach your partner how to be a good lover to you. That means if you are having bad sex or ok sex or your partner is a clumsy lover…you have to take responsibility for part of that because you are not teaching him any better. He can learn! Be gracious with yourself and him and coach him toward what you like. Sex is for both of you.