What’s Turning you On (Or Off)?

Jan 05, 2011 2 Comments by
With all the many physical changes you’re undergoing during your nine months of pregnancy, it’s no wonder desire and sexual pleasure are being affected, both positively and negatively. You’ll have to learn to accommodate some of the negative effects so their interference in your sex life is minimal.
  • Nausea And Vomiting. Morning sickness can certainly come between you and a good time. After all, it’s hard to purr with pleasure when you’re busy gagging up dinner. So use your time wisely. If your morning sickness rises with the sun, put after-dark hours to good use. If your evening are queasy, hop on the morning love train. If morning sickness stays with you day and night, you and your spouse may might just have to wait out its symptoms, which typically taper off by the end of the first trimester. Whatever you do, don’t pressure your self to feel sexy when you’re feeling lousy; the result won’t be satisfying for anyone.

  • Fatigue .  Its hard to get busy when you barely have the energy to get undressed. Happily, the worst of pregnancy fatigue  pass by the fourth month (though exhaustion will probably return in the last trimester). Until then, make love while he sun shines (when the opportunity presents itself) instead of trying to force yourself to stay up for after-dinner romance. Cap off a weekend afternoon of lovemaking with a nap or the other way around. Have the kind of breakfast in bed that doesn’t leave crumbs.

  • Your Changing Shape. Making love can be both awkward and uncomfortable when your bulging belly seems to loom as large and forbidding as a Himalayan mountain. As pregnancy progresses, the gymnastics required to scale that growing abdomen may not seem, to some couples, worth the effort. What’s more, your fuller-than-ever figure may make you feel less sexy (though some women-and most partners-find that pregnant shape the most sensual of all female forums). If your body is a turnoff to you, try dressing it up in lacy lingerie or lighting your love nest with the flattering glow of candles. Also try to shed those negative body images by thinking: Big (in pregnancy) is beautiful.

  • Your Engorged Genitals. Increased blood flow to the pelvic area, caused by hormonal changes of pregnancy, can make some women more sexually responsive than ever. But it can also make sex less satisfying (especially later in pregnancy) if a residual fullness persists after orgasm, leaving you feeling as though you didn’t quite make it. For your partner, too, the engorgement of your genitalia may increase pleasure (if he feels pleasantly and snugly caressed) or decrease it (if the fit is so tight he loses his erection).

  • Leakages Of Colostrum. Late in pregnancy, some women begin producing the pre-milk called colostrum, which can leak from the breasts during sexual stimulation and can be a little disconcerting  (and messy) in the middle of foreplay. Its nothing to worry about, of course, but if it bothers you or your partner, concentrate on other parts of the body (like that possibly trigger-happy clitoris of yours!).

  • Breast Tenderness. For some couples, pregnant breasts (full, firm, and possibly larger than life) are favorite toys that can’t get enough play time. But for many, that early pregnancy swelling comes with a high price-painful tenderness-and along with it, a look-but-don’t-touch policy. If  your breasts are bringing you more pain than pleasure, make sure your partner gets the memo-and remind him that the tenderness will ease up by the end of the first trimester, at which point he’ll be able to enjoy a hands-on approach.

  • Change In Vaginal Section. Wet isn’t always wild when you’re expecting. Normal vaginal secretions increase during pregnancy and also change in consistency, odor, and taste. If you’ve always been on the dry or narrow side, that extra lubrication may make sex more enjoyable. But sometimes, too much of a good thing can make the vaginal canal so wet and slippery that it actually decreases sensation for both of you – and even makes it more difficult for your partner to keep his erection or reach orgasm. (A little extra foreplay for him may help him out in that department.) The heavier scent and taste of secretion may also make oral sex off-putting. Massaging scented oils into the pubic area or in the inner thighs (but not the vagina) may help. Some expectant moms experience vaginal dryness during sex, even with all those extra secretions. Unscented water-based lubricants, such as K – Y or Astroglide, are safe to use as needed when you’re having a dry spell.

  • Bleeding caused by the sensitivity of the cervix. The mouth of the uterus also becomes engorged during pregnancy – crisscrossed with many additional blood vessels to accommodate increased blood flow – and is much softer than before pregnancy. This means that deep penetration can occasionally cause spotting, particularly late in pregnancy when the cervix  begins to ripen for delivery (but also at any time during pregnancy) . This means that deep penetration can occasionally cause spotting, particularly late in pregnancy when the cervix begins to ripen for delivery (but also at any time during pregnancy).This type of bleeding is usually nothing to be concerned about, though do mention it to your practitioner for extra reassurance. There are also plenty of psychological hang-ups that can get between you, your partner, and full sexual                                 enjoyment during pregnancy. These, too, can often be minimized.

  • Fear of hurting the fetus or causing a miscarriage. Stop worrying and start enjoying. In normal pregnancies, sex isn’t harmful. Your baby is well cushioned and protected inside the amniotic sac and uterus, and your uterus is securely sealed off from the outside world by a mucous plug in the mouth of your cervix. Your practitioner will let you know if there’s reason why you shouldn’t have sex during the pregnancy. Otherwise, go for it.

  • Fear that having an orgasm will stimulate miscarriage or early labor. Although the uterus does contract following orgasm – and these contractions can be quite powerful in some women, lasting as long as half an hour after intercourse – such contractions are not a sign of labor and aren’t harmful in a normal pregnancy. Again, if there’s a reason why should avoid orgasm while you’re expecting (because you’re at high risk for miscarriage or preterm labor, or have a placenta problem, for instance), your practitioner will let you know.

  • Fear That The Fetus Is “Watching” Or “Aware”. Not possible. Though your baby may enjoy the gentle rocking of uterine contractions during orgasm, he or she can’t see what you’re doing, has no clue what’s happening, and will certainly have no more memory of it. Fetal reactions (slowed movement during sex, then furious kicking and squirming and a speeded-up heartbeat after orgasm) are slowly response to uterine activity.

  • Fear Of “Hitting” The Baby On The Head. Though your partner may not want to admit it, no penis is big enough to get close to it. Once again, the baby is well sealed off in a cozy uterine home. Even if your baby’s head is engaged in your pelvis, deep penetration can’t do any harm (though if it’ uncomfortable, avoid it).

  • Fear That Sex Will Cause Infection. As long as your partner doesn’t have a sexually transmittable disease and your cervix is not open, there is no danger of infection to either mother or fetus through intercourse. In the amniotic sac, the baby is safely sealed off from both semen and infectious organisms.

  • Anxiety Over The Coming Attraction. Sure you’re both preoccupied and maybe a little (or a lot) stressed out. You might be experiencing mixed feelings, too, over your baby’s imminent arrival. And it’s sometimes hard to have sexy thoughts when your mind’s cluttered with worries about all those upcoming responsibilities and lifestyle changes, not to mention the financial and emotional cost of bringing up baby. Your best move? Talk about these feelings openly and often – and don’t bring them to bed.

  • The Changing Relationship. May be you’re having a trouble adjusting to those impending changes in your family dynamic – the idea that you’ll no longer be just lovers, or partner, but mother as well as father. Or you may be discovering that the new dimension in your relationship brings a new intimacy to lovemaking – with it, a new excitement.

  • Resentment. Feelings of resentment – of your partner towards you, perhaps because he is jealous that you and the pregnancy have become the center of attention, or of you toward him because you feel you’re doing all the heavy lifting for the baby you both want and will both enjoy – can keep things chilly under the sheets . Such feelings are important to talk.

  • Belief That Sex Later In Pregnancy Will Cause Labor To Begin. It is true that the uterine contractions triggered by orgasm become stronger as pregnancy proceeds. But unless the cervix is ripe and ready, these contractions do not appear to bring on labor – as many hopeful eager overdue couples can attest. In fact, studies show that couples who are sexually active during late pregnancy are more likely to carry to term.

Of course,  psychological factors can also add to pregnancy  sex pleasure (good news!). For one, some couples who worked hard at becoming pregnant may be happy to switch from procreational to recreational sex. Instead of being slaves to ovulation predictor kits, charts, calendars, and monthly anxiety, they can enjoy spontaneous sex for pleasure’s sake. For another , many couples find that creating a baby brings  them closer together than ever before, and they find the belly a symbol of that closeness – instead of an awkward obstacle.


From Conception To Delivery, Sex During Pregnancy

2 Responses to “What’s Turning you On (Or Off)?”

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