Sometimes, especially in the first year postpartum, it can feel like your body is no longer yours. It’s common to feel disconnected from your prior physical self, including your body as a sexual form. Your partner may be eager to reconnect intimately, but you may feel differently. ⠀
Your postpartum body may feel less like a wonderland and more like a battle zone. If you’re nursing, you may experience your breasts as a sexual turn off if they’re leaking or simply because you’ve been relating to them in such a nonerotic way. You may be in the mood for sex but too exhausted to do anything about it by the time the baby’s asleep. ⠀
Reduced interest in sex during the first year postpartum
There may be evolutionary roots for diminished interest in sex during the first year postpartum:
You’re focusing your energy on caring for your baby, and that leaves less for other pursuits, especially pursuits that, biologically, could produce another baby for you to take care of.
There’s also a hormonal explanation for a lack of interest in sex. All the cuddling and holding your baby (and breastfeeding) releases oxytocin in your brain – the same bonding hormone that is released during orgasm. When you get it from one source, you may not want it from another.⠀
Try to remember: Your partner’s sexual advances are more than just a sign of neediness for your body and love.
They’re also a way for him to say that he still values you as a romantic partner. It’s healthy to try to hold on to your identities as lovers in addition to being partners and parents. If sex is an important way you normally bond, but you don’t want it yet, try to continue some forms of physical contact, for example, holding hands and kissing each other good night.
Your sexual connection isn’t only about sex—it’s also about closeness and communication. And it’s one of the foundations of your relationship, not as parents but as people who love each other.⠀