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Sex After Kids

Dr. Lisa Lawless

Dr. Lisa Lawless, CEO of Holistic Wisdom
Clinical Psychotherapist: Relationship & Sexual Health Expert

Finger puppet family, Sex After KidsPreserving Intimacy

If you are a parent, you know it is quite a challenge to have a great sex life, whether you are a single parent or with a significant other. Even time for masturbation can seem challenging. Below you will find some tips on how to get in touch with the more sensual side of life while keeping healthy boundaries with your children around sex.

Keeping Focus On Sex

It's easy to stop trying to seduce one another after the honeymoon period of a relationship, but after kids are born, partners can become so wrapped up in their parenting roles that they lose sight of all else. Yet, because regular sex keeps couples more lighthearted, affectionate, and less argumentative, ensuring that you have intimacy is vital. Many couples say they often feel too tired to have sex, but once they get going, they remember how good it feels and how it can relax them.

Children Need To Respect Privacy

Children should be taught to respect their parent's need for private time without them. Not only does setting boundaries around this allow for personal time, but it introduces a child to the concept that they are not the center of the universe and need to respect others' needs beyond their own.

Establishing Boundaries

  • Have a lock on your bedroom door, and don't be afraid to use it. Doing so lets your children know that this is your space, and they need to respect it.

  • Use noise in your room to create an audio barrier. Using a fan, humidifier, white noise machine, music, or television to create this can help you feel more relaxed and not as worried about what the kids may hear. If you use sex toys, use vibrators with low volume and high power capabilities.

  • Turn off your phones and other electronic devices for communication when you want to spend time together. Making one another a priority is essential, even if it is short.

  • Designate a private storage space just for you and/or your lover. See our Sex Toy Storage ideas.

  • Don't forget to add a little spice to what you wear to bed. It can provide a psychological lift. For your nighttime dates, have fun and bring sexy back.

  • Talk about things other than your children. Talk about sex and have fun with playing adult games with one another. For ideas, see our Sex & Communication Guide.

  • Get a good babysitter so that you can leave the house, even if it is for a short while. Beyond the expected date, a night of dinner and a movie allow you to connect, such as having a picnic together or taking a walk, which can allow you to relax and connect away from the stress of daily living. See suggestions for Romantic Getaways & Adventures.

  • Couples with a great deal of intimacy flirt and compliment one another outside of the bedroom. Their foreplay is a constant, so when it comes time to head into the bedroom, they do not have to spend time reconnecting with one another; they are already connected. Hugging, kissing, playfully grabbing one another, and sharing verbal affection are things that close couples never stop doing whether they want sex or not. Also see our guide on Foreplay Tips as well as How To Ask For Better Sex.

  • Make sure that both partners feel as though they are respected and share responsibilities. If one partner is doing a lot more work in a relationship, whether it is shouldering responsibilities of physical tasks, the mental load of planning everything, or initiating emotional contact, then the intimacy within a relationship will die. No one wants a partner that acts like a child and forces them into the role of a parent with their significant other. Ensuring that both partners are shouldering the weight of responsibilities emotionally, mentally, and physically is key to maintaining intimacy and connection. For more help regarding this see our guide: Improving Relationships

Bedtime Routines for Couples

  • Going to bed simultaneously can allow you to feel a sense of connection and allow for the time you might not give one another otherwise. It will enable you to enjoy laughing, touching, and connection, where desire begins.

  • Get into the habit of hugging and kissing one another goodnight. There is nothing more romantic and sweet as a couple that always ends their day this way.

  • Give yourself time every night to talk without your children. Even if it is just 15-30 minutes where you tell one another about your day, things that you felt or thought and even experienced so that you stay emotionally connected.

Treating one another as a good friend is how successful couples go the distance, and when you put your mind to it, you can always find time for a good friend who is also your lover.

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