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Asked and Answered, Volume II



 Dad, this one is not for you.

This is the one about the baby making sex.

Because I excel at my craft (that craft would be blogging, in case that wasn't obvious) I am drinking wine for dinner to ensure my honesty is on point and my time is not wasted doing something frivolous like cooking. Just call me Saint Stephanie of the Two Buck Chuck.

So, here we go, the second installment of Asked & Answered 

Asked: So....I am a somewhat newlywed and have recently begun thinking about starting a family but I wonder how that whole "process" changes intimacy. 

You said you would answer honestly, right?

How does sex change during pregnancy and postpartum? 

I appreciate your honesty,

The Newlywed

Answered:

Oh, Newlywed. First, let me say that this was the first email that I received after my call for questions for this series went live. And, while some may have realized they had really opened Pandora's Box, I was stoked.

As always, I can only speak for myself (to be clear, I am speaking for me, not for my husband or on behalf of our marriage) so let's bear that in mind as we proceed.

Here's the bottom line, Newlywed:

Making a baby is fun for like 12 whole seconds (not a performance joke).

Deciding to start a family with your partner is a sweet, honest moment in any relationship.
It means that you love someone else so much that you are OK with producing an off spring that shares 50% of their DNA. That's a huge move. It takes honest conversation, running hypothetical scenarios, career planning, financial snap shot spreadsheets (oh wait, was that just us?) and a strong, hard look at what you each think the future would and could look like. And then you get down to business. You promise each other that you'll just "have fun" and "try not to try" so there isn't any pressure. You act like highschoolers and are genuinely pleased to see one another at the end of the day because you know where the night is leading. Hell, you may bust out some of those Honeymoon lace undies and get a giggle out of flushing your Birth Control pills.

Because you aren't taking things too seriously, you may only have a rough idea of when you're ovulating and how this whole baby making thing works but you'll be super sure that a teensy plus sign is just a few short weeks away.

And, if you're a Fertile Myrtle, you will pee on a stick just 20 some days later and boom, a smiley face (or, if you sprung for the name brand, the word PREGNANT in all caps).

But, more likely than not, you'll see a negative sign.
And that's OK.
It takes time.
 But something in that first negative can turn a girl just casually trying to get pregnant into a maniac hormone machine who must have a baby in her womb immediately.

Why?

I don't know, science or something, but just trust me on this one.

And then all of that fun, bouncy, sweet baby making turns into work.

It becomes ovulation sticks, calendars, apps, prenatal vitamins and a trip to the OB.
Sex becomes much, much more scheduled to increase your chances of putting a bun in that oven.
Some couples are able to rise above and hold off on the crazy for a bit, but I know I went straight to crazy town. I can remember bickering with Justin about something stupid like laundry and thinking to myself "oh crap, I'm ovulating, I can't waist a night on this fight!".

Obviously, I am a marriage pro.

I know some guys who feel like there isn't a huge rush when trying, much to their wives' dismay and, conversely, some guys who feel like they are being used for their goods. It's a delicate place for everyone and it seems that the male v. female mindset can be very different at each stage of the baby making game.

It took us 4 or 5 months to get pregnant.
Not long - very normal - but it felt like forever to me.
I wanted our baby and I wanted him more than anything I've ever wanted in my whole entire life.

And, thus, sex became a job.

A means to an end.

If I had it to do over again (and I guess I will the next go around) I would try to keep it locked up a little tighter emotionally. Try being the key word here.

As far as sex during pregnancy, that was not something that sounded appealing to moi.
I spent 12 weeks feeling like death unless I had a McChicken (no lettuce) in hand and then it was on to sore lady lumps and not being able to see my toes. I was not one of the preggos who felt womanly/sexy (bless you, whoever you are) so I had a tough time getting my mind right.

My OBGYN did inform me that many women find their sex life to flourish in the second tri, a fun fact that has somehow been spread to the men of the world. I didn't know until I got pregnant that guys think that all pregnant women get all hormoned up and ready to go in the second trimester, but my husband informed me that he received many a text from his friends telling him congrats on our upcoming second trimester free for all.

Yeah.

 I did succumb to the old wives tale that if you want your baby out, you do what put them in there, but alas, it proved to be a much hyped myth in my case.

As far as after the baby, I will respect my union and say that I was grateful for the six week grace period granted by the medical community. I did read an article that many women do not wait for clearance to go ahead and seal the deal but I was quite content to wait it out. At some point, you realize that if you have time for sex, you have time to nap, and the nap won out for me 9 times out of 10. Sleep deprivation does not make a girl feel sexy. 

So, Newlywed, I hope you are still reading and still have plans to one day make a baby.

Please know that the day I told Justin that I was pregnant will forever be burned into my memory as his reaction was simply priceless. The day our son was born trumps every single day of my life and our marriage is happy and healthy despite deciding to bring him into the world.

The first two weeks of our son's life were spent figuring out how to keep this tiny creature alive and, as we didn't have family within a million miles from us, we did it together, just the two of us. We were more a team then than we ever have been and that was without sex. I'm not a huge fan of the word "intimacy" but, for me, those two weeks of our life were perhaps the most intimate time we've ever shared. Tired, sans showers, covered in spit up and un-sexed, but incredibly in love with each other and the little family that we created. 
And now, pass the wine.
If you have a question that you're just dying for me to answer, shoot me an email at oliveandtate@gmail.com 

Stephanie | Olive and Tate |
13 Comments
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13 comments:

  1. oh lord - amen buddy! I think Reid actually started hiding from me when I informed him my fertility monitor said I was ovulating....He too thought it was going to be this awesome time of baby making love but ain't no one got time for that mess when you just want to see that smiley face on the pregnancy test!

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  2. This is what I needed to put a smile on my face. love. xoxo

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  3. crazy town.. ha! Ain't that the truth!!

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  4. This was me 100%!!! IDK where all these woman are that love sex while pregnant or right after baby but I was NOT one of them! This made me LOL for sure.

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  5. Yeah you've pretty much summed up my life pre, during, and I'm sure post pregnancy. It's crazy how quickly you go from "oh it'll happen when it happens" to "what's wrong with me?! You mean I spent all these years trying to not get pregnant and here I am actually trying and nothing has happened?!" Glad I'm not the only crazy one!
    Ally - Life as I know it

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  6. Stephanie...this is on point. Thanks for sharing!

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  7. I LOVE your honesty and you couldn't be more on point. xo

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  8. Girl, I can SO sympathize with this! I have had 2 babies now, and with each pregnancy, I went into "DON'T TOUCH ME" mode - no hyper sex drive for this prego. Having babies definitely has an effect on the sex for sure - just finding the time for it is a challenge of its own. But the intimacy that you talk about that comes with parenthood? Well, that's just the best. Love it.

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  9. Love this. I think maybe when we start trying we might skip the casually trying phase and fast forward to the ovulation sticks to try to get our ideal birthday range. And if it doesn't work the first time around, well THEN we will casually try lol.

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  10. Wow I absolutely love this post! Your honesty is amazing! Hubs and I see "baby making" in our near future so this is perfect to read

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  11. Love this! I could relate so much. It took us over a year to get pregnant and a few treatments and I was a hot mess that entire year. Emotions like crazy, it's amazing what my husband put up with. Sex while pregnant also does not appeal to me, ugh, how can anyone get it on feeling like this?! Your honesty is such a breath of fresh air.

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  12. I relate to this one thousand times over....going on 12 months of trying. Damn those ovulation sticks and your job being to have sex every other day. Keep on Keepin on! Your humor makes this post!

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  13. My husband and I tried for over 3 years. I had been doing the ovulation tests for over a year, and work-consumed husband hadn't had time to get down to the sperm analysis center. In tracking my ovulation, I realized my ovulation was occurring only 2 days prior to my period...apparently not enough time to get the spermies to stick...or not at all, and I was put on medication. Lo and behold, that first cycle of meds worked for us and I'm now 10 weeks pregnant, which is scary, exciting, amazing, and totally intimidating all at the same time.

    It is amazing that after wanting something for so long, and it's finally here...it doesn't quite feel real just yet.

    It's hard, and I know the scheduled sex is SO UNsexy, a lot of the times it's not even fun. The worst is tracking your symptoms each month, realizing they're all pregnancy symptoms (!) - nope...pregnancy symptoms are eerily similar to PMS....and your period is late (!) - nope....you just have irregular ovulation/periods. Ugh.

    I wish nothing but the best of luck to all those out there who are trying but are struggling.

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