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intimacy after children - By Megan Kelly

Let’s Talk About Sex (After) Baby!

For the last few weeks, I have been hinting at launching a new series on my blog, before I make the announcement, I thought I’d share a bit of a story and I how I got to this place…

It must have been a few weeks just before I gave birth, when I found myself standing in a queue at Clicks. I could feel the eyes of the woman behind me staring into my basket. I thought, “meh, whatever, people do it – I do it.” But when her boyfriend joined her in the queue, she whispered something, pointed at my basket and they both laughed. I glanced down into my basket, trying to figure out what caused the reaction and then it hit me.

There I stood, 36 weeks (heavily) pregnant, with a basket that contained nappies, condoms, a big stack of batteries for one of the kid’s annoyingly loud toys, lube and toothpaste.

You see, I had woken up with a bee in my bonnet – the sort that had me running through all the things that I still needed to do and buy before the baby arrived. I remembered that pretty soon, there’ll be a baby, tiredness, check-ups, feeds, nappies and before I knew it, those first six weeks would be behind us and my doctor would look at me and say, “it’s cool to start having sex again.” – only, I remembered from my last child just how hard that really was, so right there, in that crazy-scattered-nesting moment, I wrote on my list, “condoms and lube.”

I realized that no one really speaks about it – sex – or rather, sex after children. I mean, yes, it is an intimate part of your relationship shared between you and your partner but pick up some glossy magazines, and you’re bound to find an article with, “10 tips for a better orgasm” among hundreds just like it, targeted at the young, fun and still dating.

But what about sex after kids – where are the articles that tell me what to expect? I wish someone had told me that at times you’ll feel like sex is a damn chore or that your kids will almost always walk in on you, that sometimes it will seem like weeks since you last smooched, or how hard it is to feel sexy  when you smell like vomit, haven’t washed your hair and haven’t shaved in a week not to mention coming to terms with your new “mom-bod.”

Sex was really hard after having my first child – it was uncomfortable, confusing and it took a long time for me to feel like my body was mine. Back then, I didn’t have mom friends – I was alone, and I thought that I was the only one trying to adjust to this new version of intimacy.

You see, this was all new to me. I was raised in an open-minded family. My mom had me when she was young, so I was always around when she had friends and her sisters over. I overheard conversations I probably shouldn’t have and didn’t really have “the talk” because well, it wasn’t a big deal – I knew what I needed to know and if I ever had questions, it was okay to just ask.

Later in life, my aunt started a business selling sex toys and when I matriculated, I sold them too. I spoke to women about the most intimate part of their lives. When I tell people about this part of my life, their mind immediately thinks of a scene from 50 Shades of Grey and while there isn’t anything wrong with that, my best customers were women like me and you. I am talking about moms who are head of the PTA and just want to try something new or wives who didn’t know how to tell their husbands what they liked. I gave up my sales gig when I fell pregnant (the irony isn’t lost on me!). So, for me, sex has never been a taboo topic – until I had kids and it started to feel like one.

One night, after catching up with some friends who are also moms, it hit me that we were all in the same boat. The days of spontaneous sex had long been forgotten, replaced by a never-ending to-do list and knowing that somewhere, on that list, we needed to find time for ourselves and our partners.

Being quietly laughed at while standing in the queue at Clicks, for being overly pregnant and buying a basket full of random stuff, lube and condoms wasn’t humiliating, it was sort of eye-opening. I was buying those “essentials” because I knew that I would forget to during the 6-weeks haze, and when the time did come and we finally found a gap to be intimate, I didn’t want to experience the uncomfortable feeling that I had previously. I was there because I knew better and because despite having children, I still value intimacy and the (limited) time with my husband. So, instead of crawling back into my usual hole, I was sort of proud that I had remembered intimacy, especially during the craziness of my last few weeks of being pregnant.

It was this experience, and many chats with mommy friends that inspired me to launch a new section on my blog dedicated to relationships and intimacy. I will be the first to admit that I am not an expert – but since first drafting this idea last year, I have made a few friends who ARE experts with loads of resources, advice, and products. With their help, I hope to create a new platform for moms and expecting moms to seek tips, help and recommendations when exploring intimacy after children. I want this space to be honest, open and humorous – because let’s be honest, you’ve also put Moana on to keep your kid distracted, while you rush off to the bedroom.

So, let’s talk about sex (after) baby! A new series focused on exploring relationships and intimacy after having children.

My first official post (and giveaway) goes live next week – but I’d love to know if you have anything in particular that you’d like for me to focus on? I will also be partnering with local brands who will be making this campaign possible – with their guidance and expertise, I look forward to creating a platform that you can always rely on.

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  • Jenni
    Posted at 12:44h, 09 February

    Thank you Megan for launching this great new series of blog posts. I will be following you closely. Something that bothers me is that, at the end of the day I’ve been pawed at by my 2 year old all afternoon the last thing I feel like is being intimate. AND, coming to terms with my mom-bod is still a daily hurdle. Help!!! So excited to keep reading your follow up posts!

    • Megan Kelly
      Posted at 15:29h, 11 February

      Thank you so much for taking the time to comment! I know that struggle all too well and hope that the series will help you! X

  • Maz
    Posted at 21:54h, 06 February

    DUDE. Sex after pregnancy is weird AF. After I had Mikayla, I wanted to do it all the time. After i had Knox… not so much… at all.
    Slowly getting my groove back… looking forward to this series!

    • Megan Kelly
      Posted at 12:32h, 07 February

      Thanks Maz!

  • _eatwithaspoon
    Posted at 10:50h, 06 February

    It’s so funny, when I was young and single (or casually dating), I felt so free to talk about sex. But the older and more relationship-ed I got, the more prudish I become! It actually annoys me.
    Now, 2.7 years after having a baby, our sex life is pretty much non-existent. We both work demanding jobs, and my son is not a good sleeper. We are ALWAYS tired. I’m not on birth control, because I don’t want hormonal stuff and we hate condoms. Oh, and we’re not really on the market for another baby. Sex feels really risky all of a sudden, and combine it with being exhausted all the time, we just barely find time for it (once every few months, if that).
    And it feels pretty horrible, to be honest. And I’m not sure how to rectify it at the moment.

    • Megan Kelly
      Posted at 18:21h, 06 February

      Ahhh, I know this all to well! Thanks for such a great and honest comment! I hope that this new series helps you guys!

  • Leigh-Ann Otto
    Posted at 10:42h, 06 February

    AH I AM SO EXCITED! Sex felt so gross and dirty and wrong after having a kid. You somehow become innocent when you are pregnant. Everything is so pure and the love you feel in that period is so overwhelming and different. My brain was like… my body grew a human and my boobs are now food… so uhm… no thanks.

    • Megan Kelly
      Posted at 21:53h, 06 February

      Thanks so much for all the support Leigh, a lot of this wouldn’t have been possible without all our chats! You’re a badass mom!

  • Dominique Jansen Van Rensburg
    Posted at 09:33h, 06 February

    I loved co-sleeping with my first & it made my breastfeeding journey 1000x more convenient & will definitely be co-sleeping again with baby #2 BUT – co-sleeping for hubby & I mean we don’t really have a comfortable place to get ‘down to it’ and I feel like this is one of the biggest hurdles we faced with sex after a baby.

    • Megan Kelly
      Posted at 21:55h, 06 February

      Ahhh yes! We have Axl’s bed against ours and a co-sleeping cot on the other side – we KNOW the struggle. Such a good topic!

  • Nayes
    Posted at 20:03h, 05 February

    Yes! To all of this.

    • Megan Kelly
      Posted at 20:43h, 05 February

      <3 Thanks Nadz!

  • Kim Muller
    Posted at 17:47h, 05 February

    Yes please. 3 kids later and it feels like we never have time, are always tired, or one of the kids are around us and we can’t do anything. Love the idea of this series. Q1 – what to say to 3 year old that walks in on daddy rubbing mommy’s back that’s PG and not be repeated to grandpa ? Q2 – ways to get in the mood when you’re super tired and not in the mood but hubby is “always” in the mood. Can’t think of more right now. Looking forward to following this series

    • Kim Muller
      Posted at 17:48h, 05 February

      Oh and we’ve definitely done the Moana movie vibe ?

      • Megan Kelly
        Posted at 20:43h, 05 February

        hahahahahahah! So glad it’s not just me 😉

    • Megan Kelly
      Posted at 20:44h, 05 February

      These are brilliant! Thank you!

  • Lydia
    Posted at 16:39h, 05 February

    Don’t have kids. But love sex. So I’ll be here, being a creep. Reading about toys.

    • Megan Kelly
      Posted at 20:44h, 05 February

      hahahahah, I love you my creep!

  • kerryheathfield
    Posted at 14:52h, 05 February

    I am so glad you are doing this, not only for the moms but for all of us women who could do with some real life sex talk. Great post, as always.
    I look forward to following this series xx

    • Megan Kelly
      Posted at 22:00h, 05 February

      Ahhh, Kerry, your support is always so appreciated. Really and truly, thank you!