Pregnant Passions: Keep Intimacy Alive

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He’s thinking: “Wow, she looks sexier and hotter than I’ve ever seen her — boy am I turned on!”

She’s thinking: “I’m nauseous and tired and I feel like a blimp — if he so much as touches me one time I’m going to scream!”

Welcome to pregnancy — a time when many couples find their sex life has become a roller coaster ride, with neither partner knowing what to expect from themselves or each other.

Intimate Life Interrupted

“From raging hormones and mood swings, to incredible intimacy seems to come to a dead halt — and neither partner understands why,” says Lusskin.

If this sounds familiar, fear not. Although having sex — specifically having intercourse — may be out of reach for part or even all of your pregnancy, shoulder or asks for that intimate, bonding cuddle, his thoughts rapidly dive below the waist. Within minutes, she turns him away and he gets angry — and both partners end up feeling guilty and pretty bad.

So what went wrong? Experts say a lack of communication is at the core.

“Key is that the woman let her partner know that not wanting intercourse does not mean she is rejecting him or their relationship — she’s simply focusing on their child for a time, and explain the fact that there is a whole lot of biology going on, at least some of which is controlling the way she feels about having sex at any given moment, ” says Jerrold Shapiro, PhD, professor and chairman of counseling psychology at Santa Clara University, and author of When Men ankles if that’s what she wants at the moment; for the woman it may mean recognizing her partner’s need for orgasm and helping him achieve that in whatever way she can manage to do so — even if it does not involve intercourse,” says Sugrue.

It’s not about forcing yourself to do what you don’t want to do, he says, it’s about honoring the needs of someone you love to the best of your ability.

Perhaps most important, is the recognition that coupling is also about partnership — and realizing a good partnership has many components that need to be honored to keep intimacy alive.

“Somehow our culture is not teaching us that marriage is more than just a romantic liaison, and not emphasizing the life-partnership aspect. Because in truth, when you build a life with someone, there are many equally important components that go into the mix,” says Lauren Howard, CSW, a psychotherapist in private practice in New York.

At the end of the day, Howard says keeping the intimacy alive is all about compromising, without losing yourself. “You don’t want to give more than you can afford, but you better be giving something to each other, says Howard.

7 Ways To Keep Intimacy in Your Pregnancy

To help keep the ultrasound, and if there is a medical reason why you can’t have intercourse, consider bringing your doctor into the situation to help explain to your partner what is going on and why.

  • For both of you: Remain proactive about keeping intimacy alive.
    “Don’t let your relationship slide, even a little bit; if you feel the closeness slipping away do something about it — if you have something of value, you want to take good care of it -and each other,” says Sugrue.
  • Editor’s note: Writer Colette Bouchez is the author of Getting Pregnant: What You Need To Know Now, and author of the forthcoming book, Your Perfectly Pampered Pregnancy: A Beauty, Health and Lifestyle Guide For The Modern Mother-To-Be.