She-Section Week 1: SEX WTF/FTW

Welcome to the first week of "She-Section"... as in "no guts, no story." As in "lets rip right into the abdomen of TMI". As in slumber party central o'clock, who wants popcorn.

First up? The sex talk, which was pretty unanimously called for in the comments of this post and next week we'll talk about taking a spouse's last name vs. not... taking a spouses last name. And then the week after that we'll talk about friendship and then we'll talk about something else. In the meantime, this post is rated NSFFamily for obvious reasons. TMIF.


Once upon a time before I was married I used to say things like, "Well, when I get married I'm still going to have sex all the time because I'm so into sex and sexsexsexsex I'm so sexual!" Because in those days, I had no idea what the hell I was talking about.

There's a good chance I still don't but I am about to celebrate my eighth wedding anniversary next week, so I feel like I can write from experience a la what has (and hasn't) worked for us in our (imperfect but mostly! happy) marriage.

When Hal and I first got together it was... not because we loved each other (or even really liked each other that much.) We were a one night stand turned three month stand turned eight year marriage and four children... stand.

Sadly, eight years + four babies  = not so sexy sex life. Do we have sex? Totally yes. But it's... trickier.

ED: There's a reason "married with children" insinuates "no sex life." Because there is nothing less sexy than a family. Not that having a family isn't the best thing ever totally awesome, but it makes it far more difficult to take one's "wardrobe" from day to night if you know what I mean.

You can't exactly swap out the "oversized bag" for a "clutch" as they say. The trick is rocking that massive hobo reverse cowgirl style.

My point is that, women, especially women postpartum have a harder time "getting it up" than, say, a man does. Call me crazy but I think it has something to do with the fact that there are no babies coming out of any penis holes and to my knowledge, no milk coming out of any man boobs.

I digress...

For me, there are two issues at play, here.

1. Exhaustion. I don't even have to explain this one. You get it. I get it. Cheers.
2. Nine years. According to my calculations, Hal and I have had sex at least a thousand times, which, I mean...  we've kind of done it all at this point, you know? We've done it all many times over and, well... hi.

Not that one can't have a rockin' sex life doing the same eight positions on repeat until the end of time, but the sights and smells and everything else do not change. Which is why monogamy sucks. I mean, fine, it's something to be valued and etc etc a million reasons why we should all be monogamous HOWEVER, can I get a show of hands from those of you who aren't thinking about other people pretty much on a consistent basis?

Because, hi, welcome to being a human animal.

Which is why porn works for me/us. It makes monogamy (feel) less monogamous. I know porn gets flack for a variety of reasons (we can talk about that in another post if you want) but when you've had sex with the same person thousands of times, it's nice to see other people having sex. I think so, anyway. There's also books (check out my friend, Rachel's anthologies, they're here and they rule) and sex toy stores all over the Internet.

Making time for each other is also super important. Date nights should be mandatory. It should be the first vow you make when you commit to another person. For better for worse, til lack of date nights do you part... 

But most importantly, we must ALWAYS remember to cut ourselves some slack when we're not all there sexually. Most women I know were nowhere near ready to have sex six weeks after giving birth. It can take months (or longer) to feel like a sexual person again. So long as we take into consideration our partners and the shit they must be going through, too. (It isn't particularly easy for them either.) Just because we have the babies doesn't mean we have the right to be flippant and insensitive about our partners' needs. Everyone deserves to be treated with respect when it comes to sexual needs and listened to sans judgement.

Communication is obviously the most important part in all of this. Great sex is 99% communication. Putting on sexy lingerie and sipping wine by the fire means nothing if you can't have an honest conversation about what you TRULY desire...  whether it's a threesome in a hotel room or more space.

Sit down, eye to eye, cell phones off and talk. Talk about things that matter and things that scare you and things that excite you. Candid conversation + mutual respect = key. And, yes, if you're us, a little porn.


What about you? How do you maintain a healthy sex life? What is your secret to marital bliss? How often do you have sex? How often would you like to? Any and all insight is welcome. Thanks in advance for sharing. BRB while I go find the ouija board. 



Anna | 10:33 AM

Thanks for your honesty about the subject. I'm not a mom yet, but hope to be one in the near future, so this is all very interesting to me.

Bradford | 10:34 AM

Our baby is 16 months. I (the lady) would like to have sex at least 5 times a week. My husband thinks that is too much. I am having a hard time understanding his lack of desire for it. If I don't initiate, we could go weeks without any thing. So, I don't know what to do. Monogamy does suck. :(

S | 11:07 AM

Love the comments and I have to add a thought. Timing. It's all about timing. Whether pregnant, post-partum, or somewhere in the middle, I genuinely want to have sex at least a few times a week. My husband does too. But our timing sucks. He always seems into the idea at 11 PM, when he has finally wrapped up work for the day (he runs his own business and tends to bring work home all the time) and I'm just done. For some unknown reason even to me, I tend to be in the mood between 1-5 pm. Yes, I work, but I work from home, plus it's not like I invented the term "nooner," so I figure I can't be the only one. So our timing sucks and it causes terrible ruts. On the other hand, the extra anticipation for days missed pretty much guarantees everyone has a good time, if you know what I mean. So it sucks when we're waiting, but the not waiting is awesome.

christina | 11:56 AM

God I love your honesty. I am not married nor do I have kids. BUT, I am in a relationship with a wonderful woman with which I have awesome sex. I am also a 40 hours a week nanny to twin boys who sometimes zap any remaining energy and desire to be touched by anyone at the end of the day. That alone creates an interesting dynamic when she wants to cuddle and be sexual and I, well, I'd rather not. But she is amazing and we communicate well and she knows when I am in that mood that I'm best left alone. There are also times when she has worked 36 hours in 3 days that the last thing she wants is sex. But when we are both in desireable moods, it's on and it's good. Long story short. Our relationship equals 1. Communication 2. Respect 3. Timing 4. Love 5. Repeat.

Amelia | 3:27 PM

One of my most favorite things about my husband is that he ALWAYS wants to have sex, right then, 700 times a day. (With me.) Until it's not and I yell; PRETEND LIKE YOU LOVE ME FOR MORE THAN MY VAGINA FOR A MINUTE PLEASE. I would be heartbroken if he stopped though.

Monogamy is rough. I think it helps we can be honest about it without hurt feelings.

Thank you for this post, it's very reassuring to know we can have a healthy relationship while acknowledging that I just checked out that person's ass over there. And that he may have too.

Anonymous | 4:22 PM

Just under 9 years married with 3 young kids, and having the best ever! I started to workout and found it made me feel sexy again when the results started to show, in addition to increasing my stamina. Just to add, i was not big but needed to tone up. Somehow it all clicked. I have multiple orgasms at a go most of the time. My 2 cents is to find what makes you feel sexy again and that might work for you too.

Anonymous | 6:16 PM

My husband and I have a baby and a two-year-old, plus he works shiftwork, so it's REALLY hard to find time for sex. I'm also breastfeeding, which I find leaves me with zero sex drive most of the time.

I often find myself initiating sex *for* my husband, but then I enjoy it once we actually do it, and I always think "Huh, we should do that more often." And then the next night I'm exhausted as usual, and don't feel like it. Vicious cycle of mommyness!

Love this new feature, Rebecca! So refreshing to hear (read) other moms talking about s-e-x.

Melanie | 8:06 PM

I'm exactly the same way! I have to convince myself to get into the mood. But once we get going, I LOVE it.

Melanie | 8:12 PM

It's not that I don't like sex, because I do! It's more that I can't get my brain to switch off and enjoy the moment. With seven year old triplets, a full time job, training for a half marathon, and keeping up with household chores, sex had become just another to do. I don't want it to be a to do, but something I look forward to!

KateFitz | 8:45 PM

5 months post partum with my 2nd and I'm just now getting interested again. I'm the least sexy feeling pregnant person in the world. Like I wouldn't sleep in the same room with my husband because his deep sleep breathing irritated me let alone having sex.

My big issue lately is the only time available or have sex is when the kids are asleep and most of the time I just want to pass out. Sex wakes me up and knocks my husband out. Having sex means adding an hour or 2 to my day and if the baby wakes up overnight and my 3 year old wakes up at 6am. I'm screwed and not in the good way.

Anonymous | 10:15 PM

This is a point well made and trust me it goes both ways. My wife usually starts feeling the mood in the late evening before bed. You know what I want to do before bed? Relax with my book and wind down in a comfortable bed after a long day at work. I, on the other hand, am ready to either right after I wake up and am ready to face the day or sometime in the afternoon. Neither of which are very feasible with a 7 month old at home. So we do our best to work together and get things going. It can be a real challenge at times, especially since neither of us enjoys hearing that the other isn't in the mood.

Molly | 10:52 PM

We've been together for 20 years and have two kids (5 & 3).
We'd always had a good sex life but it's gotten so much better since we've had them. I was a very sexy pregnant person both times, and although we had the expected lean times when I was breastfeeding and not sleeping, we've bounced back both times in a BIG way.
We're enjoying sex now more than ever and I seriously wonder whether pregnancy awakened me hormonally (is that a word?)!
My fear now is how we'll get by when the girls are old enough to understand the noises coming from our room - I don't want to have to keep it down!

Anonymous | 10:26 AM

This is me, too. Never in the mood, but when he gets me there, I think, "Why am I never in the mood? That was awesome."

Anonymous | 10:28 AM

This is me, too (minus the half marathon, lol). I've actually given my husband and in-the-moment run down of what I think before/during sex and he said, "That's ridiculous. You need to relax." Yup. So now he understands a bit more that I need to kind of talk my way into sex, to get my mind fully engaged and be able to let go.

Judy | 2:14 PM

My hubby and I are going on thirteen years married. We are both the only one the other has ever had sex with, so obviously my comparisons might be a bit more limited than some.

I know for us, now, and over the last few years our sex life has gotten better and better. Not necessarily more frequent, we have three kids and now his dad lives with us. But better, we both enjoy it so much more than before. I'm way more comfortable than I use to be and confident, which is a huge turn on for him, which is a huge turn on for me! I guess it took us a while but we found our groove.

We would both like to do it way more often than we do. Some months it's nada. Then some we'll get to do it several times a week or more. Most of our sex actually happens in the morning. We have a relaxed morning shedule cuz we home shook and he works for himself, and we have a good solid lock on the door. We send the baby with the big kids while they are watching a movie, and then yeah! Quietly, but oh yeah!

My favorite are our middle of the night rendezvous, when he'll turn over to cuddle and we both get 'woke up'. He's usually way to tired by the time we go to bed, but after about an hour and a half of good sleep, he's raring to go!

My heart feels for those of you having a hard time right now or are just to exhausted. I don't know what having multiples feels like, but I do know exhausted and frustraTed, and how it feels when things just aren't clicking. Hang in there Mama's!

Judy | 2:19 PM

Sorry, we home school. Not shook. Ha!

Anonymous | 5:26 AM

I'll try and make this simple: This is a public forum. Discussing one's intimate life here is like shouting on a crowded street. Anyone can read these comments, including online stalkers. There are creepy people out there who live for stuff like this. I choose not to share my private life with strangers. This kind of discussion belongs among close friends who know each other IRL.

Anonymous | 3:31 PM

I have a question for everyone. My husband and I got married a year ago. We were together a year before that and had a pretty good relationship in the bedroom. Since we've been married we barely have sex. We have gone weeks without sex. And I find I'm just not into it, sometimes he is, but not like it once was. We're also relatively young-mid 30's. not sure this is what it's supposed to be like. Thoughts?

Marjorie | 5:22 PM

My husband and I didn't have sex till we got married and were both virgins till marriage. It was really healthy I think and based on our religious beliefs.

We have been married 5yrs and have 3 kids and actually in the last year, our sex life has been the best ever! lol I know that's crazy, but we're finally in a place where we are comfortable trying new things like toys, etc. I think the more you do it, the more you want it. Maybe it's just a phase though.

I'd say 1-2 per week :)

Anonymous | 1:24 PM

@girlsgonechild, what porn, pray tell? My man and I have searched high and low for porn that is good for couples!

Anonymous | 10:19 PM

I'll try to make this simple for you: there are people such as myself who enjoys reading this blog and finds solace in knowing there are other people going through similar experiences in life. You don't have to share your private life but don't tell us what is and is not appropriate to discuss here.

Katiedidtoo | 7:58 PM

I second that!! What freakin porn that's not totally fake and ridiculous??!!