So, is it possible to have a satisfying sex life after having children? Many wives will say, no. They’re too tired and preoccupied with all it takes to raise children. And many husbands will say no because it just isn’t happening. And even when they want to make love, the children always seem to be there (physically or mentally).
Unfortunately, that can be sad, but true. But does that mean that it’s not possible to have a satisfying sex life until the kids are grown and out of the house?
Lets hope not. Your marriage may not survive that long.
A Satisfying Sex Life Can Be Important
“Sex after kids can’t make or break a marriage, but the results of not having sex after kids can. For women, sex is a vessel to achieve emotional intimacy. After a baby, she still expects her husband to meet her emotional needs—like saying he’s proud of her and cuddling with her—without the sexual intimacy. But for men, sex is intimacy. And when he’s not prioritized, he stops sharing and caring. When a man feels rejected or isolates himself, Satan is right there, ready to provide an alternative that will ruin not only a man’s family but also the generations that come after him.” (Rosberg, from the article, Sex After Kids is Challenging, But Not Impossible”)
Yes, there are temptations that can usher in potential problems. But making love to your spouse is important for other reasons, as well.
In a marriage, sex is the spice that rescues our relationships from becoming mundane pursuits of chores. Adult life is filled with responsibilities. We have mortgages to pay, yard work to maintain, laundry to clean, cars to service, and so on. But none of us got married so we could load up on chores. We got married out of hope, and because we believed there was some kind of magic between us. We got married because we believed we could have great sex together.
“A satisfying sex life can add dignity to all the other pursuits of life. It is the thing to look forward to after a dull or miserable day at work. Sex is the moment of connection that creates a deep bond, even when sprinkled weeks or months apart. Sexual union adds an underlying deposit of strength that can help hold couples together when life threatens them apart.
“…God gave you this gift to be enjoyed, savored, and strengthened. When you enhance your overall marital well-being, the rest of your life is more effective in accomplishing God’s purpose for you.” (Bill and Pam Farrel, from their book, “Red Hot Monogamy”)
Sexual intimacy is important to the health of your marriage.
Most of us would probably agree that having a satisfying romantic sex life together as husband and wife is important to the health of marriages. And yet how is it possible to achieve when you’re so tired and preoccupied with the children (and often the desire is gone)? Let’s face it:
“As soon as the baby arrives, nearly every aspect of your relationship changes —including your love life.” (David and Claudia Arp)
It may be that before you have children:
“You swear it will never happen: you will not become one of those couples who lets the fires of romance burn out as soon as children come on the scene. You know the ones—with puke stains on their t-shirts and bags under their eyes, they seem to have little in common other than an obsession with telling everyone about their wonderful child. Then one day you wake up with the Barney theme song running through your mind. You realize that your conversations with each other now revolve around sleep (as in who has had less), poop (as in who has cleaned up more), and the new host of Blue’s Clues. Maybe keeping the romance alive is going to be tougher than you thought.
“Take heart! Though it may seem impossible, your love life can survive the Diaper Phase…”
How can that be?
To learn more, please click into the Family Life Today – Canada web site article to read:
Arlene Pellicane writes the following on this matter:
“How can you rekindle your desire for intimacy, even with a new baby? Put it on the back burner, but don’t forget about it. Having a baby does take a great amount of time, work and energy. Sex may have to go on the back burner when your baby has a need. But just like you wouldn’t leave food sitting on the back burner for weeks, don’t forget about sex completely. When the time isn’t right for you, tell your spouse you’d really like to make love another time, how about on the weekend? Set a real time and keep your commitment. Food left on the back burner will eventually go bad and the same is true about closeness in marriage if you neglect lovemaking too long.”
Arlene also gives this advice:
“Put your mind to it. Your brain weighs just over three pounds, but it has 12 billion cells with thousands of thoughts blazing through it each day. These thoughts determine what you think of yourself and what your actions will be. If you keep telling yourself, ‘I’m too tired to have sex’ or ‘I don’t want my husband to see me naked,’ guess what? You’ll act on these thoughts and avoid sex indefinitely.
“Why not think of yourself as a lover? Re-train your mind and paint a different picture of yourself as the woman your husband is dreaming about. Make a point of thinking each day, ‘I am a sexy woman, desired by my husband. I am looking forward to being intimate with my spouse.'” (Arlene Pellicane, from her article, “Sex and the New Mom”)
It’s important to survive the Diaper Phase and every phase because as David and Claudia Arp say,
“Your kids will wait while you build your marriage, but your marriage won’t wait for your kids to grow up. …Becoming parents should not make us celibate. Can couples have kids and still maintain a sex life?”
Look for creative ways to be intimate.
We’ve seen more marriages fail than we can count because couples have put their children first for so many years. They didn’t have enough left in their relationship to keep their marriages going after the kids left. Please don’t let this happen to you.
Here are some helpful tips the Arps give in their Marriage Partnership Magazine article, “Sex After Kids”:
Since children present obstacles to finding time alone together, look for creative ways to get together. Use the challenges, delays and separations to fuel your romance. Because it’s more difficult to make time for sex, you also appreciate it more when your plans for love succeed.
Remember that sex is God’s idea. He is the one who put the passion and desire in your heart for each other, and he wants you to celebrate your sensuality by loving each other with abandon. In a recent survey, we asked parents around the country to share tips for how to remain lovers while parenting their children.
Here are their best suggestions:
Hire a sitter to take the kids to the park on Saturday morning for a couple of hours.
Have a weekly date night. This standing date isn’t necessarily for sex, but it adds romance to your marriage.
On Sunday afternoons, save a favorite video for the children to watch while mom and dad “take a short rest.” Then lock your bedroom door.
Let the kids spend the night at a friend’s house.
Take a 24-hour getaway every couple of months. During these brief rendezvous, you can enjoy the spontaneity that just doesn’t happen at home with kids around.
Put the kids to bed early and have a romantic candlelit dinner at home.
Now, some of this advice works when you have small children around. But what about teenagers? It’s true what Sheri Miller wrote,
“Everyone warned us that small children would impact our sex life. They forgot to mention teenagers.”
How do you overcome that obstacle? Sheila Wray Gregoire wrote a related article, which gives a few tips that you might find helpful when the kids are growing up and very aware of the fact that sex just may be going on between the two of you:
Make this aspect of your lives together a priority.
Upon reading the above articles, not only can you make the time and find the opportunity to have sex even after the kids are born, you should. And an added bonus is that you can become a better mom if you make it your priority. Mother and author, Karen Linamen gives the following insight:
“I believe there is no conflict of interest between motherhood and loverhood. In fact, the bond that is created by sexual intimacy between you and your husband does far more than enhance your relationship alone —it also enriches the lives of your children. That’s right! The best mothers are not those women who devote every waking moment to their children. The best mothers are, indeed, those women who take the time —make the time —to cultivate, protect, and express the lover within.”
To read her reasons why, please click onto the Pillowtalk article to read:
Cindy Wright of Marriage Missions International wrote this blog.
If you have additional tips to help other spouses on this issue, please “Join the Discussion” by adding your comments below.