Whenever I sit down to chat with clients who have young children, a common topic comes up with. Their sex life has hit the rocks.
Sleepless nights, fussy kids, running around to activities, constant snack prep, negotiating work schedules, school schedules, it’s all designed to keep you from feeling ‘in the mood’.
We laugh and make jokes, but seriously, it’s been seven years and counting, and things are not getting better. How long can a marriage last without a chance to be physically intimate with your partner?
The stats are scary, many couples resign themselves to being parents rather than lovers, some choose to go outside their marriage for physical comfort. Worst case, the marriage ends up failing and it becomes one more broken family.
So what can we do?
Aside from the commonly heard solutions like having a ‘date night’ once a fortnight or so, I wanted to come up with some ideas. So here are a few of my thoughts on this dilemma.
Children often end up in the bed with you, even if you start off strictly putting them to sleep in their own room. For some reason, half way through the night, the sound of pattering feet, and the little body sliding in next to you seems to happen, however strong your intention of getting some alone time with your lover.
I found taking one side off of the cot and putting it next to our bed, added that extra space, so my daughter was close but not actually in our bed. At least my husband at the time and I could snuggle together in peace, although much more than a quiet grope was still not possible.
Another trick I used was getting a quickie in the bathroom with the door locked. I’d let the girls watch a half hour TV show or something and we would disappear into the bathroom to enjoy a joint shower, or whatever we could invent to do there.
Creativity and some underhanded bribes are often needed in order to make some time and space to show your partner some love.
But what about the tiredness? Being a parent takes so much energy, emotionally and physically, that the body sometimes has nothing left for intimacy and romance. I’ve heard so many parents say in an exasperated voice, that emptying the dishwasher would be the sexiest thing their partner could do!
Finding time for self care and then also relationship building time, can be a huge challenge. However, I’d say that nothing is more important than doing this. A few minutes of holding hands, giving each other a foot rub, feeding your partner chocolate or strawberries can be much more rewarding than getting the dinner dishes done right away.
Priorities are important, and it’s good to check in with yours. Do you really place more importance on tidying the toys up or on keeping the intimacy alive in your relationship? Is your email really a life or death thing, or could you use that five minutes to connect with your partner? Often, the real cause of the breakdown of our sex lives, is we have stopped making it a priority in our lives.
Hiring a sex coach could be the perfect way to jump-start your sex life after having children. We can give you tools and ideas to work with to make sex more inviting, fun and pleasurable. We can also provide some accountability for both partners to make the effort to reconnect.
It’s important! Families thrive when both parents are feeling loved, supported and satisfied.
Book a discovery call and let’s talk about how I can help you and your family discover the pleasures of intimacy.