Very often patients will tell us that before they had children they thought about sex, enjoyed sex, were adventurous sexually.
And then they became a mom. And the lights went out.
Being a mom and a sexual being is not an oxymoron. But for many women it is, and how you conceptualize the effect of motherhood on your sexuality can play out emotionally, behaviorally, and sexually. Yes, there can be a hormonal component; a stress component; a lifestyle component; a relationship component. But there’s also the cognitive component: The beliefs you have about motherhood, the beliefs you have about sexuality through aging, the beliefs you have about keeping space for your own sexual vibrancy while devoted to the vibrancy of others.
Sex has a natural fluidity in any relationship. It has varying meanings throughout one’s lifetime. But it doesn’t have to be meaningless when it’s in the same sentence as “motherhood”.