By Knude Society Team

Postpartum sex: 5 tips

You’re knee deep in nappies. You’re beyond what you thought tired could be. You’re hangry. You just want to drink a warm cup of tea for once. You feel hungover from the weirdest party you’ve ever attended. And your body has changed forever.

But you have a beautiful baby to show for it all.

Postpartum is a wild time for parents. Most of the time you don’t know which way is up, but you keep on going anyway. And now you’re potentially ready to start having sex again. Which can also be a wild feeling too. Some research suggest that many women are ready to have sex 3-4 months after giving birth. But if you’re ready before or after that, that’s OK! It’s down to you and how you feel.

But if you are ready or you’re beginning to feel like you want to be ready, we have 5 tips to help you dip your toe back in. Please note, if you’ve been medically advised to wait, we always recommend following your physician’s advice.

  1. Baby steps, literally

    Your body and mind have just been through something huge. And it might need a little TLC of its own before you have sex with your partner. This can be in the form of masturbation, but it can also be as simple as reacquainting yourself with your body. Taking a bath and running your hands over this amazing form that birthed a human. Or if you need to reconnect mentally take some time to yourself to think about what turns you on. Is it erotica? Is it compliments from your partner? Is it knowing that all of the muslins have been washed and dried ready for your little one?

  2. Rekindle the romance

    Now you’ve reconnected with yourself, it’s time to reconnect with your partner romantically. Take up offers of a few hours off from your little one from friends and family if you can. Or start by dedicating 10 minutes a day to each other. Make it solely about the two of you — leave all the life and baby-related conversations and thoughts to a different time.

    Flirt, compliment, have physical touch that doesn’t necessarily lead to sex. Look to build the spark and anticipation back. You don’t have to dive back in to sex straight away — although you might want to! In which case, go for it.

  3. Communicate, communicate, communicate

    So good that we said it three times. Like having good sex at any point in your life, communication is key. This goes all the more after having a baby. Sit down with your partner and have an open, honest chat about your feelings, concerns, and desires. Remember, you're in this together, and understanding each other's needs will create a more comfortable and enjoyable experience for both of you.

    When you are getting down to it, take your time on the first go. Does what used to turn you on still do it for you? Do you need your partner to take extra care over specific parts of your body? Use the first time to explore all of this openly.

  4. Lube

    We sound like a broken record when it comes to lube. But that’s because it’s that important! Lube is so important to help create less friction and chafing, which if you’ve had a vaginal birth can be a god-send. Be liberal with it. Our hormones are wildly all over the place postpartum, and so if you normally get “wet” (please note, we recommend lube for everyone regardless of how “wet” you get) this may not happen.

    Lube can also offer differing sensations for you too — it doesn’t have to be used just for penetration. Use it in foreplay with a toy, use it on a partner’s penis (if they have one) for a different kind of hand job, use it as part of a gentle genital massage.

  5. Penetration =/= sex

    Here it is louder for people in the back: SEX DOESN’T EQUAL PENETRATION!

    Penetration might be the first thing you want to do. If it is, great! If not, that's great too

    Postpartum penetration can feel too much to begin with. If that’s you, explore what else can bring you both pleasure instead. Oral? Mutual masturbation? Massage? Sensual touch? Voyeurism? There’s a whole menu of things you can do to enjoy sex without penetration. You never know, you may discover something entirely new that turns you on.

Your body and mind has gone through an amazing journey, and it's important to embrace the changes. Post-baby first-time intimacy might come with its share of challenges, but it's also an opportunity to deepen your connection with your partner. Remember, you're not alone in this adventure, and with open communication, patience, and a dash of creativity, you can make this experience both informative and fun.