It's not news that after giving birth women aren’t usually eager to get back the horse (so to speak), but a new study concludes that co-parents (the partner who didn’t carry the child) also typically experience a decrease in sex drive. So, does having kids ultimately mean sexual death? Find out more.
A recent issue of The Journal of Sexual Medicine published the conclusions of a study conducted by Dr. Sari van Anders and her colleagues at the University of Michigan. Dr. van Anders asked 114 test subjects (95 men, 18 women, and 1 unspecified) whose partners had recently given birth to complete an online questionnaire about sexuality in the three months following the birth of their respective children. The questions were focused on the physical, social, emotional, and psychological experience of the subjects.
The researchers revealed that just as birth mothers experience a downward shift in sexuality so do their partners. This seemed largely due to the burdens of caring for a newborn; fatigue and stress both played a role in the decrease in sex drive among co-parents.
What’s the takeaway? It’s not your fault! It’s your partner’s fault, too!
Don’t put pressure on yourself to jump in the sack right away after getting the green light from your doctor—after all, your partner may not be too keen on getting busy quite yet either. Have a frank discussion to make sure you’re on the same page, and if you’re sex life remains stagnant after several months, seek counsel.