Baby Steps to Better Sex After Childbirth

For most women, sex after their six-week postpartum check-up is generally safe. But at this stage, many women do not want to entertain the idea of sex. Sleep deprivation and the fact that we may or may not have showered or brushed our teeth in days are just a couple of reasons we don’t feel sexy. Plus, while pregnancy is a blessing, it is not always the most comfortable endeavor and we all know how we got there. For many us, after pushing a tiny human out of your vagina, it can feel like the pathway has temporarily shifted to “exit only.” Regardless of when a doctor says sex can resume, it is a very individual choice as to when it actually does. These following steps will put you on the path to enjoying sex after baby!

  1. Wake up your pelvic floor muscles. It’s best to start here because the pelvic floor muscles,which are tired from supporting baby, are also responsible for orgasm and sexual satisfaction. Begin with breathing: sitting tall, inhale until the entire torso is full of your breath. This will stretch the diaphragm and the pelvic floor muscles. Then exhale completely feeling the muscles between the sit bones draw to center, and the lowest belly muscles hug in and draw up, to help press all of the air from the lungs. Stimulating the pelvic floor muscles in this way can also help with any post-baby “leaking” that might occur.

  1. Increase blood flow. When the bleeding has stopped, you can lie with your legs up the wall. This will help nourish your pelvic muscles and relax the nervous system. Place a yoga bolster, a folded towel or blanket about 2 palms distance away from a wall. Lie on your back with the support beneath the small of the back, the pelvis dropping into the space between the support and the wall, and the legs resting up the wall. If the hamstrings (the muscles at the back of the legs) are tight, bend your knees. Allow yourself to rest here for 5-10 minutes.

  1. Move your hips! Think Elvis’ hip circles but slow. This can be done in a number of ways. You can do this on all fours, standing or in a wide squat with the hands on knees. You just need to get those hips moving. You want to feel like the thighbones are just stirring in the hip sockets as the pelvis rotates around. This will stimulate all the muscles of the hips and pelvis and help to increase blood flow to the pelvis. Do 10 circles in each direction.

  1. Kegels done right! Kegels are a great way to strengthen the connection of the muscles of the pelvic floor that are responsible for sexual satisfaction and orgasm. To do them “right,” we can’t just work on the muscles that stop the flow of urine. We have to recruit all the muscles that lie between the 4 bones that frames the pelvic floor (the two sit bones, the pubic bone and the tailbone) and that interdigitate at the perineum. You can do Kegels in a seated position or lying down, with your knees bent and your feet planted hip-width distance apart. As you exercise, make sure to breathe deeply (as described above) to create good pelvic floor strength and flexibility. Here’s how:

Part 1. Sit in a simple cross-legged position. Inhale deeply, sensing into the muscles that lie between the two sit bones. Imagine each sit bone is an elevator door. As you exhale, draw these muscles toward one another, closing the elevator doors. As you inhale, the doors (re)open and release. Repeat for 4 rounds of breath.

Part 2. Now do the same thing with the pubic bone and the tailbone and imagine that they are the elevator doors. Exhale to draw the muscles toward one another, and inhale to release.

Part 3. On an exhale, draw all 4 points to center: the two sit bones, pubic bone and tailbone. Releasing on an inhale.

Part 4. When you feel like you can fully draw all 4 points to center closing the elevator doors, you attempt to lift the elevator up. With every exhale; you challenge how high you can lift the elevator, imagining that there are 2 floors from the pubic bone to your navel.

  1. Grab your lube! It’s like a desert up there. Doctors say that vaginal dryness is normal after the first few weeks after delivery, but don’t be surprised if the dryness goes on for much longer! This can make sex extremely uncomfortable and even painful. Especially for the first go at it, lube well -- yourself and your partner. Lube, lube, lube! There are many lubricant options, but many women I have talked with, myself included, have used coconut oil.

  1. Be Patient. Each pregnancy is different. You may be in the mood for sex two weeks after giving birth, but are forced to wait until the doctor’s go ahead. You may not feel up to sex for weeks past your OB’s ok. Either way, honor your body, be patient with yourself and communicate so that your partner understand how you are feeling and can be patient as well.

These few steps will take you on the path to better sex after baby! With the exercises to stretch and strengthen the pelvic floor and the increased blood flow to the area, you might find, like I did, that sex post baby is so much more satisfying than it ever was before!

Who says you have to wait for birthdays or holidays to give your bestie a great gift? A sweet surprise that tells her you've been thinking of her might be the pick-me-up she needs in these more-than-trying times. We've rounded up some of our favorite go-to gifts that are certain to be a bright spot in her week. But be warned, you may want to snag a few for yourself. (You deserve it, mama.)

Here are some our favorite "just because" gifts to give our hardworking mama friends.

New Mother face + body care duo

volition face + body care duo

This correcting oil and stretch mark minimizer is perfect for the pregnant mama looking to keep her pregnancy glow. The correcting oil brightens the skin while reducing dark spots, and the stretch mark minimizer works to smooth her ever-growing belly.


Allover roller

esker allover roller

This jade roller goes beyond your typical face roller and can be used anywhere on the body. It works to increase stimulation and reduce puffiness and is perfect for applying any oils to the face or body. Plus, it feels like a mini spa treatment.


Kombucha making kit

farmsteady kombucha making kit

What could be a more perfect gift for the health-obsessed friend? This kombucha making kit comes with everything you need to brew your own homemade green tea kombucha. They'll think this is the tastiest gift ever.


Laetitia lipstick

cupid & psyche laetitia

This red lipstick is perfect for your makeup enthusiast bestie who is looking to spruce up her life in quarantine. Crafted in the United States, these bee and vegan-friendly and cruelty-free lipsticks are created to flatter all complexions. Cupid and Psyche Beauty makes finding the perfect red lip way too easy!


Jigsaw puzzle

inner piecec jigsaw puzzle

Mamas need to destress now more than ever during quarantine. This adorable jigsaw puzzle is perfect for the mama who needs a brain break! The 500-piece puzzle designed by artist Ray Oranges features an abstract gradient design that fits a standard frame when completed. Bonus: It's printed on recycled paper and the company donates $1 from every puzzle sold to youth mindfulness programs.


Matilda's Bloombox

matilda's bloombox

If we have to be stuck inside, we might as well have some gorgeous florals to brighten up the space. Matilda's Bloombox locally sources blooms, delivers them to her door and provides simple tips on how to arrange it into a beautiful bouquet.


'I Am Enough' bracelet

I Am Enough bracelet

Let this dainty bracelet serve as a constant reminder to your bestie that she is enough. She'll wear this on her wrist and read this daily oath to herself, "I Am Enough."


Glow assorted teas

vahdam low assorted teas

This tea gift box set covers the entire spectrum of flavors from sweet to spicy. Individually packaged in beautiful tins, your gal pal will feel like a queen sipping her morning tea. Originally $40, this set is currently on sale for just $24. We'll take two, please.


Find your voice journal

find your voice journal

Journaling is a great way to ease anxiety and will slow your bestie's racing mind before bed. This gift is perfect for first time journalists and includes prompts, daily quotes and coloring pages to help her unlock her potential and find her voice.


Premium frother

shore magic premium frother

This gift is fitting for your latte-sipping bestie who can't go a day without her coffee. All she has to do is add two scoops of collagen to her favorite drink, and she'll have a perfectly foamy drink ready in seconds. Skipping the drive-thru line has never been so easy!


Bath soak infusion kit

maude bath soak infusion kit

Say hello to hydration! She'll be feeling smooth and relaxed as ever after a long bath soaking in these salts. This vegan + cruelty-free set incorporates dead sea salt and dehydrated coconut milk powder for an ultra hydrating experience.


Tiny Tags 'mama' necklace

Tiny Tags 'mama' necklace

It's a hard-earned title she answers to a hundred times per day. Whether she's new to the club or a seasoned professional, this delicate script 'mama' necklace is guaranteed to be a perfect fit.


Superfood honey

Beekeeper's Naturals B.Powered honey

With a lack of sleep and jam-packed days, getting through the afternoon can be a real challenge. Send her a powerful pick-me-up in the form of a therapeutic blend of royal jelly, bee pollen, propolis and raw honey. It makes the ideal companion for tea, smoothies, yogurt or even on its on.


Calming midnight mask with melatonin

Who doesn't deserve a reminder to pamper themself every once in awhile? Even better, this mask does all its work at night while you're sleeping with no extra effort needed. It's an amazing plant-powered antioxidant-packed mask that has melatonin, wild dandelion leaf and hyaluronic acid to rehydrate, repair and reset facial skin. It's so good, you might want to gift it to yourself. We won't tell, mama.


We independently select and share the products we love—and may receive a commission if you choose to buy. You've got this.


One of our main goals as mothers is to encourage our children to learn, grow and play. They start out as our tiny, adorable babies who need us for everything, and somehow, before you know it, they grow into toddlers with ideas and opinions and desires of their own.

You may be hearing a lot more of "I do it!" or maybe they're pushing your hand away as a signal to let you know, I don't need your help, Mama. That's okay. They're just telling you they're ready for more independence. They want to be in charge of their bodies, and any little bit of control their lives and abilities allow.

So, instead of challenging your toddler's desire for autonomy, we found five of our favorite products to help encourage independence—and eliminate frustration in the process.

EKOBO Bamboo 4-piece kid set

EKOBO bamboo 4-piece kid set

This colorful set includes a plate, cup, bowl and spoon and is just right for your child's meal experience. Keep them in an easy-to-reach cabinet so they'll feel encouraged (and excited!) to get their own place setting each time they eat.


Puj PhillUp hangable kids cups

Puj PhillUp hangable kids cups

Before you know it, your little one will be asking (okay, maybe demanding) to fill their own water cups. This amazing 4-pack of cups attaches directly to the fridge (or any glass, metal, tile or fiberglass surface) making it easier for your child to grab a cup themselves. Just be sure a water pitcher or dispenser is nearby, and—boom!—one task off your plate.


Wise Elk puzzle tower blocks

Wise Elk puzzle tower blocks

These beautiful blocks, made from sustainably-sourced wood and water-based, non-toxic, lead-free paint, will keep your little one focused on their creation while they're also busy working on their fine-motor skills. The puzzle design will encourage patience as your kiddo creates their own building, fitting one block in after the next.


Lorena Canals basket

Lorena Canals Basket

This *gorgeous* braided cotton basket is the perfect, accessible home for their blocks (and whatever else you want to hide away!) so your kiddo can grab them (and clean them up) whenever their heart desires.


BABYBJÖRN step stool

BABYBJ\u00d6RN Step Stool

Your kiddo might be ready to take on the world, but they might need an extra boost to do so—cue, a step stool! An easy-to-move lightweight stool is the must-have confidence-boosting tool you need in your home so your growing tot can reach, well... the world.


We independently select and share the products we love—and may receive a commission if you choose to buy. You've got this.


In just over three weeks, we will become parents. From then on, our hearts will live outside of our bodies. We will finally understand what everyone tells you about bringing a child into the world.

Lately, the range of emotions and hormones has left me feeling nothing short of my new favorite mom word, "hormotional." I'm sure that's normal though, and something most people start to feel as everything suddenly becomes real.

Our bags are mostly packed, diaper bag ready, and birth plan in place. Now it's essentially a waiting game. We're finishing up our online childbirth classes which I must say are quite informational and sometimes entertaining. But in between the waiting and the classes, we've had to think about how we're going to handle life after baby's birth.

I don't mean thinking and planning about the lack of sleep, feeding schedule, or just the overall changes a new baby is going to bring. I'm talking about how we're going to handle excited family members and friends who've waited just as long as we have to meet our child. That sentence sounds so bizarre, right? How we're going to handle family and friends? That sentence shouldn't even have to exist.

Keep reading Show less