"Will I Ever Be In the Mood Again?"
Between hormones, recovery, and the demands of mommydom, sex is probably the last thing on your mind. But at some point, you'll feel ready. Studies show that 89 percent of couples have sex within six months of birth. "People think of the six-week check-up as a landmark for resuming intercourse," says Lou Paget, a sex educator and author of Hot Mamas. "But you have to find the time frame that's right for you." These tips can help:
Cuddle up. Even if you're not ready for sex, touching and holding helps preserve intimacy with your partner.
Moisturize. A water-based lubricant can ease friction against tender tissues and counter the vaginal dryness that often results from breastfeeding. If dryness persists, your doctor can prescribe an estrogen cream.
Assume a new position. Good options are those that take weight off a woman's stomach, which can be sensitive, and allow her partner to avoid putting pressure on an episiotomy or scar. Having the woman on top is usually a safe bet, since it allows you to control both the angle and depth of penetration. Another position to try is the scissors position -- you lie on your back and your partner lies on his side next to you at an angle.
Plan ahead. "Most women are so exhausted, and some start to feel that sex is just another thing they don't have time for," says Paget. Have a relative or a sitter take the baby out so the two of you can reconnect.