One of the questions I get asked a lot when I’m teaching childbirth education classes — usually via the anonymous “write down a question on this index card and drop it in the bucket” method, relates to sex during pregnancy.
The exact questions are a little different sometimes — Is it safe? Will I hurt the baby? Will I hurt my wife? What happens when I’m not comfortable lying down anymore? But for most couples, intimacy is an important part of the relationship and that can be physical as well as emotional.
I’m not sure if all childbirth educators cover this in their class sessions — I usually don’t talk about it a whole lot, but I give everyone a copy of my Sex During Pregnancy handout that I created. Each trimester of pregnancy provides unique challenges, changes, and possibilities.
For example, first trimester can be both more tiring for a pregnant woman, especially if she’s experiencing lots of morning sickness (there’s nothing sexy-feeling about vomit guys, sorry) OR she feels full of life and energetic and relieved to not have to think about birth control. Both are valid feelings and she may swing from one to the other depending on her mood and energy level.
Second and third trimesters each come with new changes — normal, exciting or frustrating changes. Partners who roll with the punches, keep open communication and are patient may find that their physical relationship doesn’t change too much at all.
Look through the handout so you have an idea of what to expect, and then realize that your reality may not be anything like that. That’s how pregnancy is — changeable and unpredictable. But it can also be a lot of fun if you let it be.
Do you find yourself changing trimester by trimester?