sex and relationships

How soon can we make love?

Once baby has arrived, how soon can we make love again?

Making love post baby

When is it best to make love for the first time after having a baby? Here’s agony aunt Suzie Hayman’s advice

When can we make love

It’s unusual to find yourselves champing at the bit as soon as you get home after the birth and quite possible and normal that exhaustion, physical post-birth recovery and even doubts about feeling attractive might put you off for weeks or a few months to come. There’s no required waiting period for when you can have sex after having a baby, but here we ask expert Suzie Hayman for her tips about having sex after the birth of a child.

Some new parents find the shared experience of bringing a new life into the world arousing and they can’t wait to get back to celebrating their bond. Others feel almost traumatised by it – or fear their partners may have been put off. Anxieties about whether it will hurt or harm the new mum can lead to you holding back, and all the unfamiliar work and new routines of parenthood can mean the gap gets longer and longer. So how long should you wait, and why?

Six days or six months
Some new parents wait until the six-week check-up with their GP while others seem to believe up to 6 months is best. But the reality is that you can go back to having full sex when you feel like it and when it feels comfortable. If you’ve had stitches it can depend on whether it was for a serious tear or a small cut. That can be from a couple of weeks to a few months – your own body will be the guide. You’ll want to take it slowly and carefully, especially as breastfeeding can sometimes cause vaginal dryness. The good news is that if you’ve never used lube before this is when you find out how much fun it can be. And while fast and furious sex is exciting there is a different vibe and just as much fun in taking your time. 

New discoveries?
You may both find post-birth that some positions you might have enjoyed can be less satisfying. Breasts can be sore and tender rather than sexually sensitive. So, this is the time to explore other positions such as woman on top or man behind. In both cases you can let your fingers do the delicate work, and the woman can dictate how much and at what angle her partner penetrates. 

Is penetration the last word?
One important thing to remember is that loving and satisfying sex need not be full sex. Both of you can, as soon as you both desire, bring each other to full pleasure with hands, fingers and tongues, without pressing on tender bits. But you may desperately want to show your partner how much you love them and are still aroused by them, but just feel too exhausted to go the whole way. If so, both partners can please each other with massage and stroking that does not result in orgasm. There is something very sexy and very loving in simply stroking each other all over, with the help of a beautiful smelling bottle of cream or oil and leaving fulfilment till later. 

Suzie Hayman headshotBounty “Sex & Relationship” articles are written by expert Suzie Hayman. Suzie is agony aunt for Woman magazine, a Relate trained counsellor, and an accredited TripleP (Positive Parenting Programme) parenting educator.  She makes frequent appearances on TV and radio and as well as writing 31 books, Suzie writes features on parenting, relationships, sex and couples counselling, for a wide range of national magazines and newspapers

How soon can we make love?