There are no two ways about it—getting in the sex mood when you’ve recently had a baby is a pretty tall order!
But let’s be clear: there’s no right or wrong time to return to the bedroom postpartum, so remember not to be hard on yourself.
Postpartum sex is best when you’re relaxed and connected with yourself (and your partner).
You’ll know when you’re ready.
And when you are, here’s are our tried and tested tips on how to get in the mood after having a baby.
In this article: 📝
- Why am I never in the mood to have sex?
- How to get in the mood fast?
- How to get your partner in the mood
- 6 tips for getting in the mood
- 1. Change your surroundings
Why am I never in the mood to have sex?
If only getting turned on was as simple as it sounds.
But even before becoming a new mom, your libido didn’t always work on the flip of a switch. 💡
A woman’s sex drive is a delicate thing—fiery and empowering but definitely sensitive.
And contrary to popular belief, men aren’t always ‘up for it’ either.
Regardless of gender, libido is fallible, especially when you’ve just had a child.
Any of the following could be affecting your libido, whether you’re a man or a woman:
- Hormonal changes: Testosterone, progesterone, and estradiol are all big players in sexual desire, so best believe hormone imbalance can wreak havoc with your libido. Your hormones go through massive changes postpartum, so if you’re feeling less than enthused about bedroom antics, give your body time.
- General exhaustion: Sleepless nights are a big adjustment to any couple and a perfectly valid reason for lack of sex after a baby. Consider napping the new foreplay.
- Stress: Between finances, work, and looking after a little one, parenting stress is real. And a 2013 study shows that high levels of chronic stress are directly linked to lower genital sexual arousal. You can thank the high cortisol and low attention span for that one…
- Lack of self-esteem: If you’re feeling less than confident in yourself, the last thing you’ll be wanting is physical intimacy. Pregnancy and childbirth are hard on the body—and on your partner’s too—it may take some time to feel comfortable in your new skin. Compassion goes a long way.
Recognizing the perfect storm of emotions and hormones going against you?
The libido can be demanding: it needs us to be relaxed, happy, and energetic.
Rather than trying to combat all three, acknowledge that it takes time, and it’s better to get yourself in a relaxed state of mind than to put unrealistic demands on yourself.
How to get in the mood fast?
Frankie may have said it first, but we’re saying it too—relax.
Nothing kills the vibes faster than parenting stress, so bring down your heart rate before you go mainlining that cortisol.
Try running yourself a hot bath or curling up with a good book—or maybe even both.
A bath shelf can work wonders if you feel like kicking back with an herbal tea! 🍵
Or take it up a notch by setting aside time to date yourself.
Yes, you’re here to get closer to your partner, but reconnecting with yourself is the best way to get there.
And encourage your partner to do it too.
Besides, it’s good practice for carving out self-care time for both of you together, even when balancing parenthood.
That could look like running the bath when you’re giving the little one his last feed before bed.
Before you know it, you’ll be pouring in bubbles for two (don’t forget the candles). 🛁
How can I trigger my mood for sex?
Once you’re feeling relaxed, now is the time to let your mind wander.
But how can I stimulate my mind sexually when all I can think about is the nighttime feed?
Simple: use your imagination.
Try taking an erotic novel into the bath or bed with you.
Take a deep breath, close your eyes, and picture yourself as the protagonist.
If you’re really into it, you may not even notice your hand heading straight for the pleasure zone.
Masturbation is a highly recommended stop on the road to reconnection as a couple.
It’s a powerful way to get to know your body again, thanks to the added boost of dopamine, and is sure to help you regain sexual confidence.
And, it’s known for aiding sleep, reducing stress, and increasing sexual desire (no surprises there).
So if you’re looking for how to get in the mood naturally, self-love as intimate as you like is the best way forward.
How to get your partner in the mood
Once you’re comfortable in yourself, it’s time to get your partner into the mix.
While masturbation is a great way to let off steam and reacquaint yourself with your sexual being, you’re also here about the two of you.
So, invite them along for the fun. 🎪
Turn it into a spicy lesson for two on how you can stimulate each other. 👩🏫
After all, both of you have been through a massive shift in your bodies and minds, and the things that felt amazing before may look a little different now.
So, embrace this new chapter of your lives as an opportunity to rediscover each other again, including practicing intimacy outside of the sheets.
And when it comes to slipping new moves under the duvet, we’ve got you covered too:
How do I get my female partner in the mood?
When it comes to knowing what triggers female arousal, science is sexy.
And look, you don’t need studies to know that for women, getting turned on—let alone achieving an orgasm—depends on a lot of variables. 🤹♀️
But it might be helpful to know that around 90% of women report having an orgasm from some form of sexual stimulation. Sexual intercourse alone? Not so much.
Which means there’s plenty of room for play and experimentation.
Erogenous zones, toys, touch, and teasing are all up for grabs in the quest for satisfying your partner—provided their head is in the right space.
Yes, women need a little more build-up than flirtatious banter and a playful squeeze.
A 2019 study shows that sexual desire in women is sparked by intimacy, having their individuality celebrated, and feeling desired by their partner. 🤩
The secret of how to get a woman in the mood lies in nurturing emotional closeness, embracing who she is outside of your relationship, and letting her know just how attractive she is to you.
How to get your man in the mood
Just because men find it easier to achieve an orgasm doesn’t mean male arousal is any less complicated.
According to one 2018 study, male libido is just as influenced by psychological, relational, and sexual factors as women.
Anxiety, emotional connection, depression, and even communication can all play a role in a man’s sexual desire.
And that’s before you bring attraction and worries about sexual performance into the mix.
So, how to get him in the mood?
First of all, let’s push social norms and perceptions of male sexual desire out of the bedroom—that includes the myth that men want and think about sex every seven seconds.
Between the pressure to perform and the insecurity when they can’t, the only mood this sets is a bad one. 😩
It’s no secret that men are highly visual, but work and parenting distractions can stop them from being present.
Flirty text messages, sensual body cues, and even an unexpected hint of lingerie are subtle ways to bring him back—who doesn’t respond well to a confident partner?
And let’s not forget the power of affection in the form of reassurance, appreciation, and active listening. You’ll have the fire back in no time. 🔥
6 tips for getting in the mood
You’ve got sexual desire down and the means to get your partner there, it’s time to set the mood.
Read on for how to get turned on (and make it last):
1. Change your surroundings
Being stuck in the same house playing Mom and Dad can lead to the feeling of ‘same old, same old.’
So, mix it up.
If you’re fortunate enough to have a babysitter, organize a date night and build up the intensity by texting each other with ideas of what you’re planning for ‘dessert.’ 🧁
Has your bedroom turned into the nursery? Who says you have to stay in there?
You can dial up the sex mood by being naughty and getting it on somewhere else in the house.
Try touching each other at moments when you least expect it—a gentle kiss on the neck while he’s chopping vegetables, a little whisper…there’s nothing like building anticipation.
2. Get experimental
Childbirth, tears, diapers—there’s not much that the two of you won’t have seen of each other.
So why not try talking about your deepest, darkest fantasies?
A roleplay gives you the chance to shake off that ‘parent’ feel and be somebody else for the evening—while still connecting with your partner. 🎭
You can also try a few games to get you in the sex mood.
For example, love dice featuring verbs such as ‘kiss’ and ‘suck’ paired with promising body parts can really make things interesting.
You can also get experimental with vibrators, lube, or a little blindfold play.
Don’t feel bad if you burst out laughing while you’re playing—it’s all about having a good time, connecting with each other, and finding out what feels good.
3. Press those buttons
No, not those buttons—it’s all love here.
We’re talking the arousal triggers.
Just because you can’t flick on your libido at whim doesn’t mean you don’t have pressure points that get you close.
Maybe it’s brushing the small of your back, a flex of a bicep, or taking control in the decision-making (hey, different strokes).
It’s totally subjective to each person, but learning what you do that makes the other person tick right on over to their sensual side is a lesson that pays for itself.
Not only do you have a secret hack to their desire, knowing only you can use it is a major confidence boost.
So, open the communication and get curious. You can even write your turn-ons down and encourage them to pull out a move when you least expect it.
Scents, eye contact, hand squeezing, that specific tone of voice—it’s all to play for.
4. Embrace the erotica
In any form you like.
Studies have long shown that erotic visual cues are big stimulants for male desire, and it turns out women appreciate a good visual too.
And it doesn’t always have to be porn.
Erotic literature is often the stimulus of choice for women because they can relate to it better and even picture themselves more favorably in the driver’s seat.
Which is hardly a surprise when you consider how little porn is female-friendly.
With tamer tales like Bridgerton only a quick Netflix binge away, there’s plenty of ways to ease into your erotica journey together.
You could start reading out passages from your favorite erotic book to your partner or writing your own.
And there’s nothing stopping you from acting out the parts you like… 🎬
We mentioned role play, right?
5. Make nap time the new playtime
If there’s one thing that’s going to help boost your lovemaking energy reserves, it’s sleep.
And as a new parent, it’s exactly what you’ve been lacking.
We’ve long heard the phrase ‘when baby sleeps, you sleep’ but what about splitting that time between a power nap and a pleasurable wake-up call? 😏
And you don’t always need to go the full distance—let’s be real, you’re probably pressed for time.
That being said, never underestimate a quickie.
But build-up is an easy move for getting in the mood.
Even a 20-minute rest can provide a little time for spooning, teasing, and getting closer without the pressure to perform in the moment.
Which brings us to the final tip.
6. Work on the relationship
On a deeper (and oh-so-real) level, many couples are not having sex because they lack emotional, physical, and intellectual intimacy.
“When couples have a broken foundation (fighting, miscommunication, not feeling completely seen, heard, or understood) in their relationship, it’s a major libido killer,” explains renowned Relationship Coach Railey Molinario.
“When they deepen their emotional intimacy, they naturally become closer and more open to talk about sex, experiment in sex, and ready to receive it.”
7. Take. Your. Time.
Above all, the best way you can get yourself in the mood for sex is to be patient.
As new parents, life is going to get in the way a whole lot more than it did before.
You may struggle to find that ‘perfect’ time to relax and unwind.
Not to mention just how breastfeeding can affect libido.
You may not realize it, but it’s a totally normal occurrence.
Stop chasing perfection and start chasing reality instead. You might not always have candles and shaved legs, and the baby may wake up—but that’s part of life.
If babies meant the end of sex lives for all couples, then nobody would have any siblings.
What’s most important is that you respect each other’s boundaries and take the time to get on the same level.
You might just prefer some ‘alone time’ for now, and that’s perfectly fine—but be honest, and the good vibes will flow.