“We have young children and I just want my peace and quiet - not Sex.”

“We have young children and I just want my peace and quiet"

“We have young Children and I just want my Peace and Quiet – not Sex.”

One of the greatest challenges in life for couples is having and bringing up children. A young father put it to me like this: “Everything is amplified – the good times are brilliant, and the bad times are a true nightmare.” I want to express my solidarity to couples who have children together. It’s one of the most transformative experiences people go through – from being an individual to becoming a parent. It’s nothing short of a miracle that their encounter and lovemaking should result in new human beings coming into this world. And yet, nothing prepares them for the changes to their bodies and their life, especially since it’s a long term commitment, for years to come. Both parents may just want their peace and quiet – not sex, but it’s frequently the woman who feels this. Couples typically go though divorce proceedings when their children are 2 and 5 years old. It’s my personal opinion that many divorces are unnecessary if only there was more help at hand, and more awareness about this common crisis in relationships. It’s not easy to be loving parents to toddlers, to be dependable day and night, to provide in the best way possible, and to maintain a strong sexual bond with your partner as well.

I just want my Body back!

A new mother’s body is nearly always available for the children, and private time and rest seems unobtainable. A friend of mine reports sitting in bed crying because she just couldn’t get the slumber she so desperately needed – baby kept fussing, and not sleeping. She so needed her peace and quiet, and it just wasn’t available to her. Young children need mum, and are always relating when awake. A day off – without the children – can become a most cherished gift. Toddlers like to touch, and mum’s body provides comfort. Is it surprising that new mums start to ward off any additional touch from their partners?

My Breasts are there for my Baby

New mums who were very happy to have their breasts touched lovingly by their partner before having children, may go through a profound change triggered by the precious love affair and physical bond that women often have with their first born. Glued into eye contact during breast feeding, this bond creates strong boundaries against anything outside, as if they were in a protective bubble of their own. Dad can feel a bit excluded when witnessing this, but it may not always be the case. When feeding, breasts become the connecting and nourishing body part for this bond, and if can feel very blissful. When breastfeeding (the healthiest and best option in my opinion) is not possible for any reason, dad gets more of a chance for bonding when bottle-feeding the infant, and taking turns.

Dad is starving for Connection and Sex

When childcare can be arranged, dads often want to get back to having a good time time with their partner. A weekend away may be arranged, when all the new mum needs is just a weekend alone, at home, to recover, and feel like herself again. Men can feel not cherished, unloved and neglected during these years, and condemned to being the financial and practical provider without feeling any love from their partner. When the physical bonding of loving touch and sex is not happening any more, they may begin to withdraw in pain, and doubt their partner’s commitment. This puts additional stress on the new mum. While men can of course understand the situation rationally, they may feel deeply unmet and disappointed, and also fearful that their partner may have stopped loving them – because that’s often what it feels like. Please be aware that this is temporary – I’ve seen couples get through this, and back to sex and love, even when divorce was on the table.

3 Simple Ways for finding back to Harmony with your Partner

Respect for each other’s Bodies

When sex is not available, men can become desperate and take the opportunity to get some touch whenever possible. While I recommend respect for each other’s bodily integrity at all times, it’s paramount to ask before touching especially when having young children. When permission is granted, the partner can feel that she has more agency, and touch can feel much better. 

Learn to Hear and Understand each other

This is not about being right or wrong. Emotions are not ‘unreasonable’. Have compassion both for yourself and for each other. Learn communication techniques and set aside time to speak when the children are in bed. Learn to listen and be present, without your own emotions and convictions getting in the way. Get help if you need a coach to be present and guide you both.

Spend Quality Time with each other

While your children will move out one day and be adults, you may still be with your partner then! Make sure that some of your time is away from your parenting role, and in partner mode. Be realistic when and how that could happen. Not everyone has family nearby who will gladly take on babysitting, or the funds to engage someone to come in. Talk about possible partner activities that can be done when the children are sleeping. Don’t forget to cherish the one who may be the most important person in your life – your beloved partner.

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