From the positive pregnancy test to weaning an infant typically takes up to two years, and involves major relationship changes, some wonderful, others challenging. Unfortunately, most pregnancy guides don’t have much to say about the sexual issues of pregnancy and new parenthood. That’s why sex educators Anne Semans and Cathy Winks interviewed 700 women about sex during and after pregnancy for their book Sexy Mamas. Their book makes no claim to be representative, but it demonstrates that the conventional wisdom is far from the whole story.
The conventional wisdom holds that women’s libidos decrease during the first trimester because of the enormous emotional shift into pregnancy and because of morning sickness, which may last much of the day. Libido rebounds during the second trimester, only to fall again during the third because of fatigue and the awkwardness of having a huge belly.
But Semans and Winks found that pregnant women’s feelings about sex vary tremendously. “Some experienced a sexual awakening,” Semans says, “others felt turned off.
Men may also experience libido changes during the wife’s pregnancy. Swedish researchers studied 112 pregnant couples. Some of the men loved sex with a pregnant wife, while others lost interest, especially during the third trimester.