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Sex after Two Kids and 14 Years of Marriage?

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What's the best advice for sex after two kids and 14 years of marriage? The momlogic community jumped in to advise a fellow mom.

couple sitting in bed

Our community member writes:

I love my husband very much but I'm just not in the mood for sex. We're both working and tired all the time. I don't want to make him feel unwanted but I also don't want to fake intimacy. Any advice?

Dr. Kevin Leman has a couple of great books out on this subject. One, Sex Begins in the Kitchen, talks about how we treat each other all day long, which has a direct effect on how we "treat" each other at night. The other book, Sheet Music, gives much more direct information. I highly recommend reading both books. He's got a great writing style and adds humor as well.

In the meantime, until you get your hands on the books, my advice to you is setting aside a regular time each day with your husband to talk. My husband and I raised five children. The chaos seemed to be constant. We had to find a specific time each day to sit in our living room (there is no TV in that room) with a cup of coffee, tell the kids this was our time -- they had to go play -- and actually communicate. We had to get past the "I have to be at XYZ at 2 PM tomorrow, you'll need to pick up little Johnny from school." Once logistics are set aside, what do you talk about? My husband and I talk about goals, discuss what we've read or heard on the news that day, share our feelings about something that is happening in our lives, or ... sometimes we tell each other how much we appreciate each other and tell each other all the great things we do. If we slip and don't set this time aside, we start to snap at each other and have less empathy and patience for each other. -- Sandy McKeown

My husband and I were in the same situation, except we have 5 children. We went through some really rough times because we just did not have time to spend with each other. So, about a year ago, I had enough of the bickering because of it, so we started scheduling dates. My kids are old enough now that the oldest can stay home and babysit, so we can go out to dinner, movie, and just have our time. Sometimes we even go to another town and stay in a hotel for the night. Believe me, even a couple of hours away from your everyday routine will make a world of difference. -- Kimmerz

Lots of my friends and I are in this same situation. 35-40ish and around 14 yrs of marriage. Some of us are full-time working moms while others work outside the home part time or stay at home. We seem to each be facing this same situation at home. The guys are always ready to go. We just don't share their interest right now and even though we want to, we just can't get in the mood.

Date night sounds like a great idea. I've often planned to start doing that, just have not gotten there yet. -- Chris

I've been married 11 years with 2 kiddos and I can tell you that there are a couple of things that have helped me:

1.) The more you do it -- the more in the mood you'll be. I've found that the longer we go between encounters, the more of a chore it seems and the more disinterested I am. I know this sounds sad -- but scheduling it (in my mind), has helped me get back in the mood. Not at first, but after a couple of weeks.
2.) I've been reading a lot of romantic fiction (not smut or porn) and watching romantic movies. This really gets me in the mood to be romantic.
3.) Tease and lead up to the event ALL day long. I send text messages. I call him. Build it up. We used to think about the night we'd be together non-stop when we were in college and suddenly, it just became, "You wanna?" UGH!
4.) Go on dates with your husband.
5.) Have non-sex make-out sessions whenever possible. It so re-kindles the passion.
-- Karrie

I think it comes down to feeling good about yourself too! My husband and I have been together for 14 years. We have 3 children and I work from home while he is on active duty in the Air Force. We do everything we can to make time for each other -- it's tough because we do NOT have family in town, being in the military, but after the children go to bed, we use that time for each other at least 1 or 2 nights a week. We also do a lot of flirting w/each other -- just like when we were in college. :) We send each other text messages or e-mails during the day. And we both take time to work out and feel good about ourselves. I work from home and have a little guy here with me every day while his sisters are at school, but I put in as much effort as I can to get dressed, fix my hair, and put on at least a little powder and mascara every day. Just feeling a little more desirable makes my desire build. It's an effort, for sure. I'm a 2x breast cancer survivor and had multiple surgeries resulting in horrible scaring all over my body (especially breasts), but I splurge on nice bras and panties and even a couple nice nighties and even wear them under my sweatshirts during the week! Even if I'm not in the mood exactly, I put those things on and know it gets him in the mood, which in turn eventually turns me on also ... -- Jennifer Wealer

Hope that helps!

5 comments so far | Post a comment now
RamyS October 12, 2009, 7:28 AM

Needed this. Thanks!

IDK my BFF Rose October 12, 2009, 7:12 PM

Married for 23 1/2 years and 5 children and my husband and I are still very passionate. We set aside date night each which week which entails kids are not allowed to interfere in our evening unless there is an emergency. If on a weekend, we pay the kids (yes pay the kids, money for gas, dinner and movie, etc…) house is locked from 5 p.m to 10 p.m. We found it is cheaper for us to send them out then to leave for an entire night ourselves. We also sneak time in whenever we can. I know it is exhausting but if you even take 20 minutes a night and make the other partner feel special, you have accomplishing more than you know. We also tell each other that we love each other every night before we go to bed, even if angry. It removes tensions and gives each other a deep sense of committment. P.S. We were married at 18 - so I feel we have accomplished more then most.

pam October 12, 2009, 11:43 PM

Love the tips for keeping things alive ladies :)

Russ October 17, 2009, 7:58 PM

Can I ask you a question? Why didn’t you marry your best, platonic friend? The answer is that there was the friendship plus sexual attraction. Just as you would rightly be justified in saying your spouse broke his vows by having an affair, isn’t witholding sex for long periods of time, also a breaking of the vows? - No one says it’ easy to get in the mood and have the enrgy. But, once you get going, doesn’t the mood sort of follow? And, doesn’t he do things when he’s not in the mood, for the sake of the marriage and family? Plus, why deny yourself a great part of marriage. - Think about it and how you can get the energy and be in the mood. It should benefit each of you!


Lara October 19, 2009, 3:03 PM

I believe there are many roads to Rome and to multiple orgasms, says Dr Patti Britton. By freeing ourselves of inhibitions, jettisoning old beliefs about our sexual capacities and learning the necessary skills, we can all reach sexual ecstasy again and again, all in the same night. This may be helpful “Techniques For Real Sex”

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