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Hump Day: Sex After Motherhood

Welcome to Hump Day, TrèsSugar's sex advice column. If you have questions about sex, send them to TrèsSugar, and our friend Dr. Charlie Glickman from Good Vibrations will offer his sound advice!

Today's question:
Being a mother of a young child is exhausting and it’s hurting my sex drive even more. The more overweight I get, the worse my sexual desire becomes, the more modest I become. My husband turns to videos to keep him satisfied in between our low sex runs, because he knows I am tired and stressed and that I don't always feel like it. How do I become someone that has sexual confidence in the way I look and feel and become more ambitious in the bedroom?

To read Dr. Glickman's answer,

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Thank you for being so upfront about this — it’s a very common experience. While I’m not a mother myself, I’ve heard from quite a few so I’ll pass their wisdom along.

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There are lots of different types of physical touch. Since you’re probably getting plenty of opportunities to give it to your child, you might enjoy being on the receiving end. Would your husband be up for giving you a backrub? Or a footrub? If his technique needs some help, the books Sensual Massage and Lovers' Massage: Soothing Touch For Two have lots of great tips. If a DVD is more your speed, The Joy of Erotic Massage is a great one.

You might want to have the first few sessions not be about sex. Take it easy and simply enjoy the experience. Your husband might also enjoy it — while many men won’t admit it, sometimes they propose sex when they really just want physical touch.

As far as your self-confidence in body goes and your sexual ambition is concerned, there can be lots of root causes at play, so I’m hesitant to make a specific suggestion without knowing more about your situation. But don’t worry — I’m not going to leave you hanging. Check out Kristen Chase’s book, The Mominatrix's Guide to Sex. She offers a lot of open, frank talk about sex, bodies, relationships, and sex. Yes, I said sex, twice, because she talks about it a lot. She also talks about a lot of the different things that can come up on her blog.

I’m also wondering if any of your concerns about your appearance have anything to do with the fact that your husband’s watching porn. The vast majority of the women in porn are perky young things and you might feel like he’s comparing you to them, whether he is or not. That’s something that can certainly add to the difficulties and the two of you might need to talk about that.

I also wonder how much your husband helps you out. You don’t mention the specifics, so I don’t want to jump to conclusions. But it’s quite common for childcare and housework to not be evenly divided. Even mothers who work full-time put in more hours on housework than fathers. If that’s contributing to the situation, not only is that going to make you more tired, but it can also lead to feelings of resentment, which is a serious libido-killer.

If your husband’s porn use or contribution to the household chores are causing difficulties, I strongly suggest that the two of you talk about it. If you find that it’s hard to get the conversation started, or that it veers off course, a couple's therapist might be helpful. Their job is to help make it easier to talk with each other by making sure that neither of you feels attacked or gets spun out. If you can find someone who you can both talk with, it can make a big difference.

Whatever you decide to do, I hope that the two of you find your way through this.

Image Source: Getty
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