4 Reasons Your Sex Drive Changed After Having a Baby

Photo by Sharon McCutcheon

So, you’ve just had a baby. Congratulations! But what about your relationship and sex life?

Many new mothers lose their libido after pregnancy. This is an incredibly common problem that can leave both partners feeling isolated and alone, and it can significantly impact your love life.

But there’s good news: intimacy and communication are essential to keeping your relationship healthy and strong. And if you’re willing to do the work, you can get your sex life back on track again.

I was in the same boat after my third pregnancy. My daughter changed my sex drive.

I know that sounds dramatic, but it’s true. She didn’t do it intentionally, but the fact remains that a spark went out for me after giving birth and stayed that way for over six months. Was it her fault?… kind of, but not exactly. But it was like someone suddenly pulled the plug on the emotional and physical connection I felt with my partner, all in one instance.

If you, too, experienced this, then know that you’re not alone. Losing your sex drive after pregnancy is common. Here are 7 reasons your baby may have changed your sex drive:

1) You have a new baby, life is crazy busy, and you’re worn out. Life with a new baby is a whirlwind of activity, and you’re finding yourself exhausted on top of it all. You don’t have time to do much of anything other than taking care of the baby, which means your energy (and libido) levels are low. You’re tired even when the baby is sleeping, when they’re playing in the bouncy chair, or crawling around the house. You can barely think about anything besides mommying, let alone imagine intimacy or being sexy again.

2) Your body has changed.

When you get pregnant, your body changes in a lot of ways. You’ll gain weight, and some will be in places where you don’t usually carry extra weight. You might notice that all these changes make you self-conscious about how others see you, especially if the way others see you is through the lens of their own desire for intimacy with another human being.

3) You’re exhausted, and you’re not getting enough sleep.

The importance of sleep is well-documented. Researchers at Harvard found that getting enough sleep can increase your brain power and make you more productive, while those who don’t get enough sleep are more likely to be depressed and have poor concentration. In short, a lot is riding on getting adequate shut-eye—and it’s worth noting that one study showed that for every night of lost sleep, your libido will drop by an average of 10%.

What does this mean for you? If you’re exhausted from caring for a newborn baby and aren’t getting any extra rest because the little one wakes up every hour (or two), then it’s likely that your sex drive has also taken a hit. Of course, there are other factors at play here—your mood may also suffer if you’re feeling overwhelmed or frustrated with all the changes in your life—but lack of sleep tends to be high on the list when it comes to libidinal adjustment after giving birth.

4) Your hormones are all over the place.

Hormones are one of the key factors that drive your libido. They can be affected by sleep, stress, and nutrition, and when you’re pregnant or breastfeeding, hormones change even more drastically. Menopause is another time when hormone levels fluctuate wildly, and medications like birth control pills can also affect them.

So if you’re having trouble getting in the mood with your partner, it might not be because of some deep-seated emotional issue—it could just be that your hormones are out of whack!

Let’s be honest: It’s common for new moms to struggle with their sex lives after childbirth. You’ve got a lot on your plate, physically and emotionally, and you’re probably feeling anxious about whether or not you’re doing a good job as a mother. Sometimes, this stress can leave little room in your brain for things like “sex” and “desire.” Even if you’re in the mood, so many things need to be done that it might seem like there’s no time left in the day—and getting intimate with your partner just doesn’t seem worth it.

You’re not alone. Millions of new moms are in the same boat as you. Be honest with yourself about what’s going on (and what’s not), and talk openly about it with your partner. If it turns out that your low libido is more than just temporary, ask for help from your doctor, therapist, or a sex coach who specializes in helping women find their way back to intimacy after childbirth.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here