Sex After Kids: 17 Ways to Make It Happen

Sex After Kids Come: 17 Ways to Keep that Spark in Your Marriage!

Sex after kids come. What a lot of work!

Sex obviously leads to parenthood, but for many couples, it then becomes rather rare. How can you keep your sex life fresh when kids are hanging off of you, you’re exhausted, and you need some time to yourself?

For the last few days we’ve been talking about sex when you’re pregnant or sex when your hormones are out of whack. Today I’d like to do a summary post of some of the things we’ve talked about lately that can help make sure you still have sex after kids come along!

1. Stress Intimacy, Not Just Sex

If you’re thinking, “why would I want to have sex? I don’t have the energy to get in the mood”, you likely won’t make love at all. Instead of seeing sex as simply a physical thing, we women need to see it as more. Yes, the physical is great, but when we’re tired, it can lose its appeal. But one thing that we desperately need is intimacy. We need to feel close to our husbands. We need to feel his love. That’s going to energize you!

When you feel like sex is a chore, think to yourself, “It’s not primarily about release as much as it is about feeling close to each other.” Concentrate on that, and it will become much more appealing (and your body may even kick in!)

2. Use Sex as a Stress-Reliever and Sleeping Pill

Intimacy isn’t the only other benefit of sex. Making love also relaxes you and helps you to sleep better. So if you’re exhausted, sex is often the best prescription! It helps you sleep more deeply and helps you fall asleep faster. I remember when I was nursing my babies, one of the problems I often ran into after the 2 a.m. feeding was that I’d be absolutely exhausted but I wouldn’t be able to get back to sleep. Waking up Keith (creatively) to make love would often do the trick!

3. Use Lubrication

When your hormones are out of whack, or you’re finding it more difficult for your body to respond because you’re worried about kids coming in or getting to sleep, lubrication can be a shortcut to arousal. It’s not cheating to use lube!

4. Make Use of Other Times of Day

One of the reasons sex and parenthood don’t always go together is that night times become difficult once kids come. You have Kids not sleeping through the night. Difficult bedtime routines. Even shift work! All of these things can make sex at 11:00 pm rather difficult. But there is no reason you can’t make love at other times of day! Many couples find the morning the easiest (if you happen to wake up before the kids do). Or make use of nap time. Just be open to mixing it up a little!

5. Talk in Front of the Kids

Sometimes we shut down sexually if the kids are anywhere around because that feels–well–wrong. But children, when they’re babies and toddlers, really don’t know what you’re saying. So don’t be afraid to flirt with your husband in front of them, or kiss in front of them, or tell your husband what you’re thinking about. When kids are with you almost every waking moment, take advantage of the fact that they don’t understand to talk sexy! After all, since our libidos are mostly in our heads, we need something to boost the libido! If we try to separate parenthood from wifehood too much, that can be difficult to do.

6. Jump in the Shower with Him

Just being naked together during the day helps you keep that spark! So if the kids aren’t awake yet in the morning, or are otherwise occupied, jump in the shower with your husband! Even if you don’t have sex, you still keep that fire going for later.

Or soak in the bath with him! Multi task. Have fun being naked together, and it will make sex a more natural part of your life, rather than just an afterthought.

Sex After Kids: Don't put your marriage on the backburner once kids come, because now other people are counting on you to make it work!
7. Flirt with Your Husband

Don’t let mommyhood take up your whole identity. During the day, even if you’re with your kids, flirt! Send him texts. Have a code word that means “I’m hot for you.” In the morning, show him what underwear you’re wearing that day. Want more ideas? I’ve got lots of flirting ideas here.

8. Enforce Bedtimes and Schedules to Make Predictability

You need your time with your husband. You’re a parent now, and that means your marriage is more important, not less. Other people are counting on you. So enforce bedtimes and schedules so that you can get some rest, you can get some predictability, and you can get some romance! Obviously when babies are small this isn’t possible, but once they’re not eating every three hours, you can start to organize a schedule that works for you and your husband.

That doesn’t always mean an early bedtime, either. Maybe you’re morning people and would rather have an hour in the morning together before the kids get up. That’s fine! But decide when you want your alone time, and enforce bedtime and naptime around that.

9. Quickies are Your Friend

When children are little, quickies can be you friend! They make you laugh, they make him excited, and they get your engines going for later (since chances are you won’t be satisfied. It’s more like an appetizer). So make use of quickies! If your children are in front of a Dora the Explorer video, head upstairs for a few minutes. Are your kids often occupied before dinner, watching TV or doing homework? Do your children set the table? Put dinner in a crockpot or get it all ready so that when your husband comes home (or when you get home) you can leave the kids to their own devices and slip in the bedroom for a quickie!

10. Sleep During the Day

The two biggest impediments for a woman getting in the mood are being exhausted and feeling overburdened. So be proactive and sleep during the day when the babies do! Do everything you can to get some rest. If you have babies and toddlers who still nap, but a 4 or 5 year old who doesn’t, make a rule that everyone has “quiet time” in their bedrooms from 2-3 in the afternoon anyway. The older child can read or play with toys on their bed. You need a nap. Do this consistently, from the time that they’re young, and they likely won’t put up too much of a fight. I just becomes routine.

And then take that quiet time to rest, not to mop or do laundry. That can wait. You will always be a better mom and wife if you have your rest.

11. Take Time for Yourself

If sex is going to be exciting, you can’t resent your husband. And often we do because we think, “I just want some time to myself! I don’t want him hanging off of me, too!” It’s a very real need. Acknowledge it and do something about it–just not at the time when it’s easiest to have sex. If you need time to yourself, join a gym that has baby-sitting. Ask your husband to take on the bathtime routine so you can scrapbook or knit or just sit and read for an hour. Do what you can to rejuvenate at other times of day.

12. Swap Baby-sitting

Need a date night? A time to concentrate just on him? Swap baby-sitting with a friend or a sister so that you take their kids and then they take yours. Even take the kids overnight to give each other a whole night to bond.

13. Make a Date Night when your Kids are Older

While sex is difficult when children are young and can’t be left by themselves very long, it gets even more complicated when they’re teenagers and stay up late and know what’s going on. So as they age, make a deal that everyone is out of the house on the same night so you and your husband can have some alone time. Send the older ones to youth group, and arrange for the younger ones to visit friends. Or always schedule activities on the same night. You need some time in the house alone.

14. Talk to Your Husband Throughout the Day

If you have lots on your mind, it can be hard to concentrate enough to make love. And we women can’t enjoy sex unless our heads are in the game. So talk to your husband throughout the day to get some of these concerns out. Take walks with kids in strollers after dinner so you can debrief. Bathe the kids together and talk while they splash. Take time to connect earlier in the day, and it will be easier to connect in other ways later.

15. Be His Best Friend

Sex has to flow out of a deep friendship. It can’t be something where you both lead totally separate lives and then you try to connect your bodies. So be your husband’s best friend. Talk. Do things together. Don’t shut him out because the kids come; try to involve him in everything you can.

16. Love Your Body

In Proverbs, Solomon wrote “Let her breasts satisfy you at all times” right after he says, “Do not despise the wife of your youth.” In other words, your breasts are supposed to satisfy your husband long after your youth is gone. And even in Solomon’s day, breasts sagged after childbirth. They had stretch marks. Or they disappeared after nursing. The Bible says, we know motherhood changes a woman’s body. And it shouldn’t matter.

Your body will change. Gravity will kick in. You’re not going to have the tight behind you did when you were 17 forever. And that’s okay. Work at loving and accepting your body. Your body brought these children into the world. It gave life. It is a wonderful thing. So dress to flatter it. Think of things you love about it! Don’t shut your husband out of the bedroom because you’re ashamed of what your body is now. If you learn to love yourself, and if you’re confident, then you’re also sexy, because confidence is sexy! So stop listing all the things you hate about your body, and start listing what you love!

17. Don’t Sleep with the Kids

I know this one is controversial, and it got me in some hot water a few weeks ago in the comments. Many women who sleep with their children in bed with them said, “we just are intentional about sex and find ways to make it work.” Good for you! But let me suggest that while your sex life can still be fine, it will never be as good as it would be if there were no barriers in the bedroom. You essentially are sacrificing a part of your marriage for sleeping with the children.

You may decide that it’s worth it, and if it’s a decision that you come to with your husband together, that is completely your prerogative. But children will grow up attached to you even if they sleep in a crib. Learning to self-soothe, and to be able to go back to sleep without Mommy, is actually an important skill.

Interestingly, every single man who commented on that post about sleeping with your children said it was a bad idea. That’s consistent with what I’ve seen. Most men do not want to co-sleep, and when they do, it’s often because the women have insisted. Women tend to be the big advocates of it, and men tend to go along. That’s really not a healthy marriage situation. Again, if it is a decision you’ve come to together, that’s fine. But don’t let your eagerness or desire to co-sleep blind you to the fact that your husband may not be as enthusiastic as you are. And his feelings should count!

Sheila is the author of The Good Girl’s Guide to Great Sex.

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  1. Good for you for sticking to your guns about co-sleeping. It is so wonderful to have our bedroom be a haven for just he and I. (Every now and then for a thunderstorm, we get a bedmate for an hour or so, but for the most part, our bedroom is our own, and that definitely gives a freedom that enhances intimacy. Other rooms and places are great, but I would hate to feel like I was limited to anywhere BUT our bedroom.

  2. Shiela, you’ve got your head on straight. “Don’t let mommyhood take up your whole identity”. LOVE that!! I love how you take everything (children, house hold work, etc) into consideration but you always point out that our marriage and our husbands are the most important. I agree whole-heartedly and I’m so glad I came across your blog at this time in my life…We had our first baby 2 months ago!:)

  3. Love these tips! :)
    Shell recently posted…Pour Your Heart Out: Second AnniversaryMy Profile

  4. awesome as always! Love all the tips!

  5. You are doing great job, Sheila! You’re laughing a lot and have a happy, joyful voice. Way to go!
    Lori recently posted…Dating Your SpouseMy Profile

    • Thanks, Lori! I didn’t think that the last question went as well as I would have hoped, but overall I was pleased. It seemed that Dennis was impressed that I had a quote of his to read!

  6. After listening to the whole program, I think it would be great if you discussed how far couples should go before marriage. That seemed to be important to Dennis. He wanted to make sure just “intercourse” was reserved for marriage. Christian teenagers want to know how far they can go. I would LOVE to hear your take on that. Having four grown children, it was definitely a learning process since the two that are married were virgins until the wedding night. My two unmarried still are but the boundaries before marriage between Christian couples would be an interesting topic. Would love to hear your take on that!
    Lori recently posted…Not Created To Be AbusedMy Profile

    • Okay, that sounds great! I’ll try to write that next week. I’m not one of those who says “you shouldn’t kiss until marriage”, although I do respect those who make that decision. But I’ve seen articles argue the other way. Anyway, I’ll try to put something together for next week!

      • Don’t we have plenty of people trying to place boundaries around pre-married/unmarried sexuality already? Just asking.

        I so appreciate people Sheila (and Julie Sibert and Paul/Lori Byerly, etc.) simply because they have recognized a gap in knowledge and scriptural application and have majored on filling it. By the time most of us walk the “aisle” our ears and heads have been so stuffed with “no” that we have a harder time with “yes” than we really should.

        • Absolutely, David! But I do think people want to know what’s actually okay to do, and with the abysmal rates of people waiting for marriage (even in the church) I do think it needs to be addressed. We just need to find that balance between saying “don’t do it” and saying “wait, it really is worth it, because sex is so wonderful when you save it for marriage”.

          • Just a suggestion from a young person (21) who waited for marriage to have sex and consistently heard the “wait, it really is worth it, because sex is so wonderful when you save it for marriage” rhetoric. Though I am so grateful that I waited for marriage to be physically intimate with my husband, I can attest to the fact that sex is not always wonderful when you save it for marriage. In fact, it can be very hard, frustrating, and even painful. I think we need to have honest conversations with your youth about sexuality and marriage, but go BEYOND the “Wait, it’s worth it” argument to being genuinely honest. I went into marriage thinking sex would be a breeze and amazing, our honeymoon would be the best week of my life. Negative. My body completely shut down from hearing so many “Don’ts” prior to marriage not to mention physical issues that made sex painful. It’s been quite a journey that I’m not totally recovered from yet. I just wanted to share a different perspective (I know this is totally unrelated to this post, sorry!!).

            Thanks for all you do Sheila!

          • I agree, Rose. Sheila I do appreciate your enthusiasm for sex within marriage (its rightful place)! I haven’t read your article yet on the “how far is too far”… but I definitely would not use the “because it will be GREAT and worth it to wait” reasoning, since that is not the biblical reason. Is it true? Sometimes, yes! And of course it is worth it. But some women/men will be greatly disappointed that they weren’t “rewarded” with amazing sex right off the bat .. because they waited. I waited — not due to a promise of amazing intimacy — but because as a Christian, God says in his word that ALL sexual activity (thoughts/actions) is forbidden outside of marriage. Touching, arousal, passionate lustful kissing, and so forth. Jesus said to even lust after someone not your spouse is akin to committing adultery in your heart. The guidelines are clear and pretty cut and dry! I am thankful for an amazing honeymoon, however, that was not our motivation. And it was definitely worth it… no regrets and no bringing that sin into our marriage. But when I was a teen, the “it will be worth it” line from “True Love Waits” did not work for me. I ended up doing it anyway, because I had no conviction over it being a sin against God. Rose – I recommend the book Intended for Pleasure by Ed Wheat.

      • *people LIKE…

        *”walk the aisle”

        Typing too fast, argh.

  7. Wow Sheila – my husband called me from his car and told me, “Sheila is on the radio with Dennis Prager!” I caught just the end but am so glad you were able to be on. We LOVE the male/female hour and find Dennis Prager brilliant. Great advice on today’s post – as a mother of 3 young kids, I heartily agree with it all!

  8. GREAT tips, Sheila!

    I’ll add one more: don’t criticize your husband. He wants you to be his wife, not his mother. Nobody wants to sleep with their mother!!

    I’ve been guilty of this far too often in my marriage, especially early on. Learning to love and accept my husband for who he is rather than view him as a “fix-up” project has changed our entire relationship for the better. There were times when his libido flagged…often, when I had lapsed into “mother” mode.

    Honest truth. :-)
    Llama Momma recently posted…Time to readMy Profile

    • Thanks llama mother. I needed that reminder. Thanks for your honesty and for posting that. Lord help me not to criticize or be a mother to my hubbie, but to be an encourager and lover. Thanks :-)

  9. Hi, Shelia — just wanted to let you know that I found your article enlightening, and referred my readers to it in my blog post today: Keep up the great work!
    Kevin B. Bullard recently posted…Sex After Kids In Not an OxymoronMy Profile

  10. Sheila —

    GREAT tips! Sure wish I’d had this list 20+ years ago…I started out motherhood with great intentions of keeping our husband-wife relationship #1 (well, #2 to God), but so much fell by the wayside as the kids got older and more interactive. So often, it was easy to let the simple relationship I had with my children take up all the time available so I didn’t have to deal with the far more complicated relationship I had with my husband.
    Cheri Gregory recently posted…10 Blogs for Better MarriagesMy Profile

  11. jrmiss86 says:

    One of the best things my husband and I have ever done is to buy easy breakfasts for Saturday mornings once our two kids were old enough to be a little more independent in the mornings. Friday afternoons I go out and get donuts, pop tarts, a special kind of cereal, etc… And milk boxes for the kids. After they have gone to bed Friday night my husband and I set up their breakfast on the kitchen table and on a easy to reach shelf in the fridge. Whoever is the last one to go to bed locks our bedroom door as they come in. The next morning the kids know that they can get up and have breakfast and they can turn on the T.V. Computer or IPods, pretty much whatever they want to do, as long as they don’t go outside to play, this time of year that is not much of an issue but in the summer I have to remind them of that rule. This give my husband and I time to both have the opportunity to get a little extra sleep, we both get up very early during the week and our kids are early risers as well. We also always get to have some private grown up time, as we tell the kids, and we can take our time and enjoy ourselves 😉 It has worked out wonderfully and I am finding that I not only look forward to Saturday mornings, but I find myself looking forward to even the times where we are a little more rushed. I have gotten some flack from other mothers about pretty much letting my 7 and 5 year old roam free for a couple of hours every Saturday, but they are good kids and know the rules and since they don’t watch much T.V. or use much electronics during the week, they look forward to their lazy Saturday mornings and know that if they are not good they will lose that privilege.

  12. I just had to comment that I bet you guys had a lot of fun taking that picture :) Great tips!!
    Megan Elzey recently posted…PerseveranceMy Profile

    • Ha! We did. I actually had a professional video guy at my house last Saturday filming a few videos I’ll be putting up on YouTube soon, and so I asked him to snap the picture while he was here!

  13. We have two that are grown and gone, and 4 that are 10 and under. Our routine is – kids in bed at 7 to 7:30pm, lights off. And we know they’ll be up at 6 every morning. We’ve tried keeping them up as late as 11pm in the past, and did it help? Nope… still up at 6am. Just grumpier! ARGH!

    So we stick to the 7pm bedtime where I (dad) reads the Bible and prays with them, then mom and dad both tuck them all into bed. Then the evening is ours to do as we wish – whether that be going to sleep early, or having some mommy & daddy private time… it’s OUR choice. And 4am comes early, as that’s when I’m up and getting ready for work. My wife sleeps as long as the kids will allow, then she gets up for the homeschooling day.
    Jason recently posted…How Was The Worship?My Profile

  14. I didn’t say anything when you had your original post on kids not sleeping in bed with you, but since you brought it up again I do have to offer a different perspective. Our kids have slept with us when they were little – and it was completely my husband’s idea. He suggested it, we talked about it, and decided to give it a try. I was much more able to be sexually available and interested when the kids were small because that sleeping arrangement got me a whole lot more rest. That whole getting up for the 2 am feeding and not being able to go back to sleep thing? Not an issue. Our oldest slept in his own bed for the first three months before we moved him into bed with us, and I was exhausted. Afterwards, I was a much more rested mama.

    I also disagree with your statement that while your sex life can be fine, it will never be as good as if the kids were in their own beds. That has not been our experience at all. We’ve had seasons with little ones in bed, and seasons where we’re alone, and while they are different, one has not been better than the other. I understand this is not the case for everyone. But please, please don’t assume that just because a family chooses to co-sleep that the sex can’t be fabulous, because it can.

    • Jael mann says:

      I agree with you. I was loving this post until I got to the last point about co-sleeping. My 4 yr old and 2 yr old now sleep in their own beds, but when they were babies an slept with us, there was no difference in our sex life than there is now with no babies in the bed. The bed is not the only place to have sex. You find ways to make it work. Our schedules are completely different, and co sleeping had no negative impact on our sex life. There’s advice, and then there are opinions. This opinion will be ignored!!

    • Anonymous says:

      I have to agree with you. I really love this post, but wholeheartedly disagree on the last point. We have six kiddos and our first child didn’t sleep in our bed and it was miserable. My husband suggested co-sleeping and it has been so much better ever since. And we still have sex and I am a happier mama because I get the sleep I need.

    • Thanks for posting, Laura! I totally agree.

  15. Nicholle Olores says:

    Great tips ahead! I agree with you here. As a husband and wife you have to fulfill each other’s satisfaction.
    Nicholle Olores recently posted…Timber Joinery – Learn Why Joinery is the Perfect Addition to Your Home!My Profile

  16. I love what you have to say here, especially . . . well, actually, I guess I can’t pick a favorite point. They’re all so good! I already practice most of them, but this post was a great encouragement to continue to strive for closer intimacy with my husband. Thanks!

  17. I TOTALLY agree to not sleep with your kids! It gives SO much more privacy and you can relax SO much better without them! Right now, our baby is in our room, due to not having nursery ready because hubby’s job was shaky, but she is in her OWN bed/swing at night! It is hard enough to spend time together with her just being in the same room, even though she is asleep! I hear EVERY little noise she makes and think, “Oh no! Don’t wake up NOW!” LOL!! Thanks for your post! It is hard to find time when we feed baby around 10 p.m. and by that time hubby and I are ready to sleep, because we start early in the morn to get older girl ready for school! Gotta find different times to spend together!! GOD Bless!! :-)

    • Thanks, Julie! And don’t feel badly about your baby being in your room. The official position from the American Academy of Pediatrics, I believe, is that the safest place for a baby in the first few months of life is in a bassinette in the parents’ room.

  18. Anonymous says:

    My husbands stepdad is always saying the #1 thing you can do for your marriage is shower with each other every day. We haven’t taken his advice, but when we do it, I can see why he says that.

  19. Why I would never co-sleep:
    My mother shared the bed with both of my younger siblings.
    Neither of them ever fully became okay with sleeping by themselves. My sister was kicked out when she was 5 and my brother was born, merely due to the lack of room in the bed. She still to this day has a hard time sleeping. My little brother is 10 and still sleeps in my mother’s bed at least half of every week. Her marriage to their father (and my step father) ended about 5 years ago and I would not be surprised if tensions over this issue were part of the problem.
    I’m 23 now and I could not be more glad that I never coslept. I slept in my own bassinet in my mother’s room while breastfeeding and then was moved to a crib in my own room after that. And I think it’s important to note that my mother was a single parent! So she didn’t do this out of some sort of selfish desire for sex at the expense of the children, like so many people seem to think you’re insinuating. I feel that I’m a stronger and more independent person than them to this day. I can not technically say that this is a result of cosleeping and not the difference in our paternal DNA but I can know that my children will not sleep in my bed.
    Also I feel like the people up in arms about their breast feeding babies being in the room but in their own beds are not truly understanding your argument. I mean a tiny infant is not going to understand what’s happening. I could be wrong but I’m pretty sure your argument is about sharing your bed/room with cognizant abilities.

  20. I’m sorry, but if my husband wants the kid down the hall, he’ll have to be the one getting up in the middle of the night. Otherwise, I’ll just end up in the kids’ bedroom out of pure exhaustion!

  21. First of all, Sheila, thank you so much for this article. I was able to take away a lot of great advice from this. I am excited to put this into action!
    Second of all, Rose, I completely agree with you 100%. My husband and I have been married almost 8 years and I am still trying to become comfortable with sex. I have spent the majority of our marriage (especially at the beginning) thinking there was something wrong with me because it wasnt everything that was promised. Lots of tears, frustration, and with being taught “dont!” for so long there was even shame and and uneasiness. Like I said, we are coming up on 8 years of marriage. I am 29 and have my third child on the way… still struggling! Its been a journey. One I hope I can spare my daughters from.

  22. The co-sleeping suggestion is definitely someone’s perogative. My husband and I did make the decision together to have the babies in bed with us to get more sleep at night. He wouldn’t say it was a bad idea and is the onewho puts them in bed with us every night when they wake up.
    We already had children of our own respectively when we married so sex has always had to be a vreative thing. And we’ve onky been married for 3 years and had 2 babies in the last 2 years.:)
    You do the math! It works for us!!!

  23. I have been dying to ask this ? and please don’t laugh because I need real answers lol
    Every set of mattress’ we have bought in 15 years of marriage has ended in squeakiness…how do I stop this? Do I need a certain set or oil the silly things? Noise is the #1 deal breaker for me and dang it Im tired of laying the top mattress on the floor!
    Please give me some advice….our house was built in 1920 so noise is and issue :)

  24. Amanda Kowalski says:

    I just read number 17 to my husband. We bedshare with our 12 month old. He said, it is true that we would have more sex if there wasn’t a baby in our bed, it would be easier. However, he said there is no solution because HE does NOT want our babies (current and future) to “self-soothe.” So to respect my husband and nuture my children, we choose to have sex outside the bedroom any chance we get. Being a parent isn’t supposed to be convenient. Having children in the house under the age of 5 is a tough season, but it doesn’t mean we need to draw a line in the sand with our children. They need us 24/7 at this age- we are on-call. We aren’t parents 12 hours a day. We are parents 24 hours a day. And guess what? I’d be willing to be we STILL have far more sex than many of your couples that are allowing their babies to “self soothe” – no such thing btw- they are actually just crying until they give up and lose faith that mommy and daddy will answer their cries for help. An infant only knows when it is hungry, wet, cold, lonely etc, an infant doesn’t manipulate and an infant doesn’t find comfort sleeping alone. In most cultures in the world there is a family bed and the children sleep in it.

  25. Sheila,
    You are so right on and I appreciate your insight. I’m going to try and be mindful about how I word this but some may hear it as they want to hear it anyway. My husband, our marriage is my number one priority after God. My prayer is for my children to see their parents crazy in love with each other and crazy in love with Jesus. That’s foundational. I know having little ones is hard to navigate but it’s a “season” they grow up and then do as adults what they see modeled at home. If you have oodles of kids but a sick marriage tell me how that is a good exchange? About co-sleeping, infants? yes, of course. When I see 4 year olds controlling the marriage bed, setting the schedule for their parents intimacy, I have to stop and ask, who’s the parent here? God gives us wisdom and the bible aids us greatly on how to raise our children with faith and trust in God. By giving them the opportunity to sleep in their own bed, you are exercising faith and teaching them that God is their security and protector. That also is foundational. You are teaching them, in fear, in doubt, seek God FIRST then mom and dad, that’s a good thing and God can be trusted in that.

  26. So what do you do if your husband works night shift Mon-Friday and sleeps during the day? Our LO is about a month and a half old and I was just released to resume extracurricular activities after being on pelvic rest for the last 6 weeks of the pregnancy + the 6 weeks after the c-section. It feels like I have to choose between sex or sleep :/

  27. Love this article…. Wish our women can just change their mindset about sex, that the benefits outweighs the complain..
    chinedu recently posted…7 Questions To Answer About Satisfying Your Husband in Bed.My Profile

  28. When is a good time for a newborn to start sleeping in their own room? Mine will be 6 weeks Friday.

  29. I love this list and I agree with most. For us the co-sleeping was something hubby didn’t want but with all 3 of our babies we had their bassinet/crib/playpen in our room for the first 4-9 months. Them sleeping in their own bed doesn’t mean you force them to “self-sooth” either. For my hubby it was important that we maintain a consistent bed time where they went to their beds to sleep. We would have additions to our bed at some point in the wee hours (like when baby woke up to nurse they’d stay the rest of the night and sometimes we still do as our kids are 8,6,&5) but when we got in bed we were on our own to connect about the day and enjoy one another. Like the author said, it’s your prerogative and your opinion and your decision with your husband on what you want to do regarding baby’s sleeping conditions but the “if he wants to do ______ then he better be the one to deal with it” attitude isn’t a respectful or honoring one to our husbands. I know I’ve said it and looking back out was a rebellious and entitled attitude. The decision is to be made by both for the sake of the intimacy to remain in marriage and if co-sleeping is something you’re both in agreement on and it works for you, awesome! Just my 2 cents.

  30. I may be speaking from a minority but I’m a father of two, both coslept and not very different in their needs and transistion to independent sleeping but no out of line with their personalities and dispositions. That being said, cosleeping was something I will always look back on fondly and remember those moments with my children and cherish. Maybe most if the men who’ve posted comments are in a demographic that doesn’t co sleep and I run in a different circle but I did/would/will/do choose cosleeping every time. My wife and I have made it the adventure of finding the time for intimacy and we have made time for each other successfully. It is totally possible and not and “either/or” scenario. Just my two cents.

  31. ***That should say “different personalities and dispositions”

    I don’t know how “not” got put in, oops;-P

  32. I love this list, especially the flirting! All but the co-sleeping issue. Our youngest (of four) slept in our bed for four years. The others did, too, just not for as long. Ironically, those years have been our best love making years, as well. Our improved sex life (and it was pretty amazing before, just not as frequent) has continued now that she is in her own bed. The change was due to a mental shift for me (simply: let your default be yes! Soon, you’ll be initiating and WANTING it more!), and had nothing to do with co-sleeping. I just wanted to acknowledge that co-sleeping had no negative effect on it. For full disclosure, my husband works evenings, so the bulk of our time together happens by distracting the kids with an activity or tv show and locking the bedroom door. They think we have a lot of things to “talk” about! One last thing about self soothing: When you are upset, do you want your spouse to tend to you, or leave the room and ignore you? Would it make a difference if you were fed and comfortable and had no physical reason to be upset? Wouldn’t being ignored still make you feel worse? Babies need responded to, too, even when the need is ‘just’ emotional! I’m sorry to spend so much time on the co-sleeping issue, but you wrote more about that than any other suggestion, so I figured I could, too. 😉 Still love your stuff, though, Sheila!

  33. I love this list! The only thing I don’t like is the one size fits all approach. Just like you warn women not to assume their husband may not be as excited about co-sleeping as they are, I would warn everyone to stop making assumptions about other people’s marriages and other people’s husbands. It would be totally fine to say what you think/believe/feel! It’s your blog and you do a great job at running it! But to tell people that no matter how good their sex life is, it will never be as good as it could be of they aren’t weren’t co-sleeping, is actually not something you or anyone else could possibly know! My hubby and I co-sleep the first couple of years (after the first year, baby gets a bed on the floor beside ours), and my husband is a huge advocate of co-sleeping. However, we BOTH understand that while

  34. Gotta love typing on a phone! Anyway, to continue after my last comment, while my husband and I both agree with co-sleeping, and have the most incredible marriage AND sex-life, we understand that it is not for everyone! Just like with most every aspect of parenting, and with marriage, what works well for one marriage doesn’t work well with another. We are all unique. Sometimes my husband and I will read a marriage article, or a certain part of a highly-rated marriage book, and know that it totally does not apply to, and/or would not appeal to us/our marriage. But does that mean that we think the advice is worthless and shouldn’t have been mentioned? Or should be preached against? No, because we understand that just because it does not work for us, doesn’t mean it won;t work for another couple. Just because co-sleeping isn’t appealing to you and your husband, and even to many husbands and wives, doesn’t mean that every couple’s marriages will be worse-off, or even just not as good as they would, had they not been co-sleeping.

  35. The other thing I wanted to mention is that it’s not ALWAYS bad if one spouse agrees to “go along” with something that the other spouse feels passionately about. When women become mothers, God gives us feelings and hormones that no other person on Earth- especially men- will ever feel towards our children. Not because we love them more, but because they are instincts God gives us to nurture and protect our children the way only a mother can. My husband understands and supports those feelings. Just like there are many times where his God-given talents and abilities and desires aren’t always things that I understand or feel myself, but I trust that what he is doing is healthy for our family, and will support those things. So just because a man may not feel the same passion about certain aspects of parenting in the first months or years, doesn’t mean that by going along with, and supporting it, he is submitting to the whims of his wife.

  36. Great list, which just shows that it take effort to keep the relationship alive and sexy after the kids start to take over your lives! # 2 is still my favorite!

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