SAHM may be well identified with women and mums but not always!
Sometimes, we need to sneak into a man’s world to know what they need to overcome during our pregnancy aside from our bulging tummies, corrupted figures and necessary demands. You know, ’cause we’re not freaking mind readers!
Today, we’ll peek into a man’s perspective on pregnancy and sex and learn how some of these truths can keep the love alive even in our most frenzied pregnancy moments.
There’s no avoiding the fact that sex is important. If it’s not the centre of a relationship it’s not too far from the axis and while there has to be constant negotiation, and the ability to keep it a focus as a couple navigate around life’s many challenges and obstacles, the bottom line is that it is always there, on some level, hovering for attention.
Generally, the happiest couples are those who see its importance in a relationship and nurture it through the tough times. For most couples, pregnancy can be the first instance where their attitude to sex as an important, intimate strength in their relationship is really tested.
Anyone who’s supported a woman through the crazy preggers ride knows the massive impact it has on a woman’s body and how this can cause insecurities about their future ‘desirability’ to their partner. There is also the fact that having a baby (or another baby) is a major life event and there is always the unknown to contemplate – will it completely replace the focus Mum and Dad have on each other? Will there even be time for sex?
It might not surprise you to hear that I’ve never lost interest in sex before, during or after any of my wife’s pregnancies. Like many men, my sex drive manages to move through any wall of tiredness/frustration/concern like a wrecking ball on a heavy length of chain.
This is clearly a hormonal thing. I don’t have to grow a baby inside me, nourish it, deliver it in to the world and sustain it for its first few years as a real human. For that you need a whole different set of hormones (plus a few other things) and this is where a crucial difference between men and women is evident. A real understanding of these normal differences is the key to maintaining a fun, rewarding and bonding sex life.
My close male friends have been right by their partner’s side for all the terrors and joys of pregnancy, labour and birth, and all have emerged more in love and more committed to their partners. We talk to each other about the ups and downs of our sex lives. One of the common ’ups’ is the rise in a woman’s sex drive, particularly during the second trimester, which for many men is one of the most highly anticipated times of the whole adventure (the little tot appearing at the end being top of the list of course.)
And when we speak about ‘the downs’ in this context it’s to talk about the after-pregnancy ‘dry spells’. But concern for our partners and an understanding of the traumas they’ve gone through, and the very real physical issues of post pregnancy recovery, is always a given in our discussions. None of us are insinuating that we’re no longer attracted to our partners. We’re just saying we can’t wait to ‘get back at it’ again with the woman we love most!
Personally, I’ve seen four “blood covered heads rip through” RM’s vagina. And I’ve seen our four babies feed at her breast these past several years. I’ve seen her body change, rapidly for each pregnancy, and more slowly over the years we’ve been together. There’s no denying that my body has changed as well. I only have to note that my head and my arse now share about the same amount of hair to confirm it (there’s an image!). But the way we’ve changed together, in each other’s presence, has only had a positive affect on our relationship and our sex life.
Yes, we’ve had the time where my need has outweighed hers. We’ve had to keep an open dialogue and adjust our expectations for the different stages of pregnancy but we’ve always managed to keep sex there at the same time that we’ve kept it fun.
And with four kids and busy lives I can tell you with authority that there is always time for sex. That’s an attitude we’ve had to work on sustaining, but it’s what has kept us focused on each other, and regularly love-struck, even during the craziest of times.
Reservoir Dad, is a forty-ish year old, stay at home Dad, married to Reservoir Mum. Four boys under 10, a menagerie of animals, and a robotic vacuum named Wilson (I love him best of all). For several years I’ve written about the million things that live inside the above paragraph while simultaneously fantasising about myself as a pop icon from the 1980s.