8 weeks, 5 days. December 22, 2016.
Normally I feel more Christmasy by now. We’ve decorated and watched some movies and went to Christmas parties and went shopping, and it even started to snow today! But, for some reason, this week or month seems have gone too fast and I’m not ready for Christmas! I’m not sure. However, it could be that I’m just so preoccupied with being pregnant and thinking about it and managing all of these new changes, that I have little time for other thoughts. This year we’re going to visit my parents. I would like to stay home in Vermont one year for Christmas. Maybe next year. I love Christmas at my parents’ house, but I miss my house and my cats. Well, one of these years when we have a little kid and don’t want to travel, maybe we can have Christmas here.
I have an issue that I need to write about, but it is probably TMI if you know me, especially because I don’t really talk about personal things, except maybe on a long run. And I don’t talk about sex. So, you’ve been warned. But maybe someone can relate.
How do you adapt to a changing sex life while pregnant? (Let’s leave after baby out of this for now. I can only deal with so much at one time.)
Bear with me while I ramble. It’s such a strange thing, as when you want to get pregnant you have a lot of sex, and then it changes once you are pregnant. For us, our (very satisfying to us) sex life changed when we started IVF because of the medications and the ovary size increase and egg retrieval and recovery and embryo transfer, and at the beginning, add in sperm retrieval. It’s fair to say we’ve been through a lot since September. And less sex or no sex was medically necessary, it wasn’t a choice.
Following the embryo transfer up to a positive pregnancy test, sex is not allowed by my doctor. Nothing can shake the uterus during that time. Makes sense. Once it was confirmed I was pregnant, I asked if sex was okay and the answer was yes, just be gentle and your cervix might bleed a little. Noted.
We were both hesitant because it’s scary! You don’t know what’s going on in there! So, gentle sex it was. Now, here’s what’s going on today. Going from sex many times per week to once per week (because that is my comfort level now) is a big change! Right!? And less sex makes for less sleep, because really what’s better than cuddling and sleeping soundly after sex? I am having trouble sleeping for many reasons, but I can factor less sex in there as part of it. And it’s definitely affecting S, who is having a difficult time adapting, even with alternative measures that I can offer. I wish I could help, but I’m scared to have more sex.
This makes it sound like S is pressuring me. He’s not. Not at all. He’s hesitant, too. But that doesn’t change how he’s feeling. I swear I wake up sometimes at 4am (other than for having to pee) because he’s rubbing my back or something. This morning the neighbor was doing something crazy at 4:30am (we can never identify what it is) so we woke up. Well, I woke up at 4:45 and couldn’t get comfortable enough to fall asleep again. (Bright side: I got to work earlier than usual, so I can leave earlier.)
We have excellent communication skills and we’re very open, even if it’s a tough subject. (I often think that’s the benefit of both of us being divorced. You are a better partner and communicator the second time around, if you in fact needed that second around. Anyway…)
We talked this morning about lack of sleep and lack of sex. Obviously related. I brought up the fact that his inability to sleep is probably lack of exercise, too. S is normally very health conscious and exercise focused, but these last few months with sperm retrieval recovery and then tons of work, it’s fallen off his radar. And now he’s out of the habit. But, it’s a known fact that exercise helps you sleep and focus. I’m running less, too, but need to run more because it’s important! I finally said, I feel as though you’re saying more sex would fix everything. I’m not averse to it – I feel fine the majority of the time; I’m just scared. And he said, no, that wasn’t what he meant, he understands, and he’s not making demands or anything. He said, “I’d rather be pregnant than having lots of crazy sex.” I added, “Said no man, ever.” And S said, “Well, I’m saying it.” He said probably every couple goes through or something like this. We know it’s not forever, but right now, it’s difficult. And he’s driving himself crazy. And by extension, me.
Part of me says, just go exercise and deal with it. Clearly he’s off balance from lack of exercise. He’s not 100% ready to admit that, even though if he thought about it, he’d know it was true. And the other part of me wishes I could offer more. He’s so sweet and supportive and is taking such good care of me while pregnant so far, and even dealing well with my moodiness, strange eating habits, or occasional snapping. Yesterday we went to subway for lunch and S donated $1 to the Children’s Hospital (the current fundraiser) and wrote “Raspberry” on the tag that goes on the window. Awww.
This is a stressful time for both of us, but in different ways. Maybe I’ll feel better after the next ultrasound, when we’ve seen the baby growing.
I don’t know. Does anyone else feel like this? Are we crazy? What worked for you and your partner?