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Week 29

week by week pregnancyYour Baby:

  • Is big and strong enough to resemble a sinister alien thrashing around your abdomen, as my husband kindly pointed out recently, upon noticing a rouge pointy elbow jabbing up and down around my belly button.
  • Is sucking up every drop of calcium you can provide as his or her bones continue to harden and become more…uh…bone-like.
  • DID I MENTION THE POINTY JABBING? WITH THE SHARP LITTLE BONES?

You:

  • Might start noticing a resurgence of first-trimester-type symptoms like heartburn and other gastrointestinal issues. Things are getting a BIT crowded in there, and the lack of room means slower digestion and more gas and constipation and woe.
  • Are gaining weight. I don’t know or care to look up what the “recommended” amount is at this stage, but most likely you are starting to notice a steady upward movement of that little thingie on your doctor’s scale. If you’ve been using pregnancy as a dietary sweet tooth free-for-all, now might be a good time to start reining it in and focusing on healthy foods and portions instead of “BABY NEEDS CAKE AND A TUB OF FROSTING ON THE SIDE.”

Sex During Pregnancy
So you know how almost EVERY movie about pregnancy and childbirth contains a “hilarious” scene where the knocked-up couple attempt to have sex? And how it almost ALWAYS ends with one or both of them freaking out over fears that the male will poke the baby’s eye out with his penis or some other scenario that demonstrates either a 1) terrible grasp on the internal female anatomy, or an 2) EXTREMELY inflated opinion on the length of said penis?
I have no patience for these scenes. Even before I ever got pregnant, I knew enough about the vagina/cervix/womb layout to know that sex does not hurt, scare or inconvenience a fetus in any way (provided your pregnancy is, for the most part, complication free).

And yet it’s taken me WEEKS to work up the squeamish resolve to write openly about the S-E-X during the P-R-E-G-N-A-N-C-Y, because…well, let’s face it. Even without the old penis-shaped head-dent jokes, pregnancy sex does pose a few challenges, especially here in the jolly third trimester.

THE GOOD: Well, a LOT of pregnant women report a nice libido spike, particularly as the misery of the first trimester fades. And this spike is often accompanied by increased wetness AND sensitivity down there. (And by down there I mean in your V-A-G-I-N-A. My God, don’t I sound like a prude). Your boobs also benefit from some added sensitivity, and contrary to the stick-figures-who-probably-don’t-even-menstruate in the fashion mags, most men (and women, hell) are wired to actually prefer the soft womanly curves that accompany pregnancy. You might FEEL fat and beached-whaley, but your partner probably thinks you’ve never looked sexier.

THE BAD: Well. You still might feel fat and beached-whaley. You may be able to admire yourself in the mirror with wonder and awe, but getting naked and friction-happy with another person can turn that wonder and awe into self-consciousness and embarrassment. The sensitivity can sometimes be too much. (My husband loves my pregnant boobs, but I want to punch anyone who touches them.) And then there’s the bloody LOGISTICS. Your favorite positions might not work anymore, and trying to find comfortable alternatives can feel a bit like playing Tetris. AND, fine, you might know for a fact that sex during pregnancy is fine and normal and safe, but there is still the mental barrier of THE CHILD in your uterus being all…THERE and PRESENT and VULNERABLE. “That WAS a lot of jostling,” you might think afterwards, while you dash to the bathroom for the dozenth time to examine some mysterious post-sex leakage. (With your cervix and uterus tightly sealed and closed off, there’s…ahem…kind of nowhere else for semen to go but…right back out. I wish someone had told me that. So much for my haughty knowledge of my own girl-parts.)

Obviously, we modern girls have plenty of ways to muddle through pregnancy sex. There’s more to the bedroom life than the missionary position, oral sex is practically vanilla these days and yeah, I’m happy to accept a little battery-powered help. So yes, let us all bask in the gentle maternal glow of this wonderful time in our lives, but let us also not forget to get our freak on, or whatever it is the kids call it these days. (And by “it” I mean O-R-G-A-S-M-S and can you tell that I don’t write about sex that much? I am a delicate little flower. Painted by Georgia O’Keefe. You know. The ones that look like V-A-G-I-N-A-S.)
Now, if you’ll excuse me, a mysterious package from Victoria’s Secret was just deposited at my front door, and while I know my husband has repeatedly insisted that he finds pregnancy to be insanely sexy, I simply MUST go immediately investigate what sort of lingerie he’s purchased, because frankly it boggles my mind a little bit.

Oh Yeah, THIS: I tried to paint my own toenails this week (in my customary place of on the couch, with my feet propped up on the coffee table) and was stupidly surprised when I leaned forward a little and *BLAM* my belly hit my thighs and the polish brush remained a good three inches away from my toes. (I moved to the bottom stair where I could spread my legs and dip my belly in between them. Damn, but aren’t I the fancy lady.)

New This Time Around: After months of prompting and training, our efforts are finally paying off. Our babysitter reported that Noah excitedly showed her around “Baby Brother’s” room. When asked where, exactly, Baby Brother is right now, he thought for a second and then pulled up his shirt. “Right there!” he announced, pointing at his belly. So…okay. Maybe he’s a little hazy on some of the details, but still. It’s something.

arrow12 Responses

  1. 69 mos, 2 wks ago

    Alliclaus did the exact same thing. We’d ask her, “Where’s baby sister?” and she’d pull up her shirt to show her belly. But if we asked her to give baby sister a kiss, she’d practically strip me naked to try to kiss the belly.

  2. thatgirlkelly
    69 mos, 2 wks ago

    Yeah, Sex! I haven’t had any problems getting my freak on once the 1st trimester passed. Though I must say, it is a bit unnerving when the baby starts jumping around just as things are getting hot and heavy. The problem at 28 weeks is that the fatigue has returned. So when the boy and I find that we are BOTH hot and bothered at the same time the it becomes a bit of a crazy WWF meets NASCAR scene. Oh by the way, I too am a beautiful flower.

  3. 69 mos, 2 wks ago

    On this morning’s “A Baby Story,” the couple said they hadn’t had sex in seven months. Now, I know that everyone is different, we make our own choices, blah blah non-judgemental-cakes, but oh, I wanted to cry for them.

  4. 69 mos, 2 wks ago

    there is a little jabby foot (i assume) trying to poke its way out of me via my belly button as i type this. aack!
    my almost 3 year old has taken to asking family members if they have a baby in their belly too. why? so he knows if he can lay on them/snuggle up without causing shrieks of “ow! that hurts mommy” as ive been prone to do these days. (35+ weeks)
    poor kid.

  5. 69 mos, 2 wks ago

    Really…that’s just plain rude to talk that much about “it”
    We have been on “pelvic rest” since 11 weeks. (almost 11 weeks ago…..)
    My doctor even said.. no big O’s.. I have a pretty crappy placenta apparently that doesnt like to play…
    I honestly started to worry when I began having dreams.. that I was pretty sure I was having the real thing.. but baby is still okay…….

  6. erin
    69 mos, 2 wks ago

    yeah, in week 32 and still expereincing high libedo, which is just a cruel joke at this point. tired of the involuntary threesome – nothing pulls you out of the mood like a swift baby punch to bladder!

  7. Crystal
    69 mos, 2 wks ago

    If positions are an issue, we found a great video at a, ahem, *adult store* called “Nina Hartley’s Guide to Great Sex During Pregnancy.” You can buy it on the interwebs and get it delivered to your house if those stores aren’t your scene.
    It was actually really helpful for us in a couple of ways
    -New positions (one of which I named “the spawning trout”
    -A visual guide to perineal massage, which I’d been reading about but just couldn’t quite visualize
    -A fairly clinical discussion about some of the issues with sex in pregnancy.
    It’s not a porn flick. Sure there’s a sex scene at the end between one of the pregnant stars and her baby daddy…but the majority of the time is fairly clinical/educational.
    Last night when we were having sex, the baby was active for the first time during the act and that was a bit weird for me. It was distracting, but not so distracting that I didn’t want to keep going. I spent most of first trimester on pelvic rest because of bleeding, and then the first half of second trimester I was still so nauseous (thanks hyperemesis-which I still have)I couldn’t even think about sex. Finally my libido overpowered my nausea and all systems have been go since around 22ish weeks (I’m 26 right now, but I love reading ahead).

  8. Emhead
    69 mos, 1 wk ago

    Have you seen Coupling on the BBC? They refer to pregnancy as “being in the John Hurt way”. There is also reference to small beings waiting to arrive from your insides ready to take over your world. Made me laugh … alot.

  9. 69 mos, 1 wk ago

    2 weeks post partum here and wishing I had gotten my freak on that last week of pregnancy because I’m missing S-E-X a bit right now (not that I would be able to stay awake long enough to have it but it sounds like a good idea).
    I also amazed my friends by being able to paint my toes and shave my legs right up to the end…all in leaning that big belly the right way!

  10. Mel
    61 mos, 3 wks ago

    TETRIS! Exactly. Just exactly.

  11. Linda
    59 mos ago

    I have an incredibly awesome husband. I am pregnant with our 2nd child, and with my 1st, my husband shaved my legs and *ahem* other places. He also painted my toenails for me. Although I did have to beg him for that one. When I went into labor, the nurses commented on how good of a job he did on shaving me *down there*.
    With this pregnancy, he has started shaving my legs again, and he will shave me *down there* once I am closer to my due date. But he has started sending me for pedicures instead of doing the toenail thing this time.
    And about the SEX. With my first pregnancy, we had no problems with any positions. With this pregnancy, we have problems with EVERY position, and it is starting to be uncomfortable for me. UGH!

  12. DD
    58 mos, 2 wks ago

    Last time my libido went on a VERY LONG vacation. Like, the entire 2nd & 3rd trimesters. We did actually perform during that time, but I was NEVER the one to start it (and I didn’t enjoy it). It came back almost immediately after giving birth but I had some stitches and had to wait. Just saying, I understand those poor “it’s been 7 months” people. My poor, poor, husband.
    This time, things are working a bit better for 2 reasons. This 2nd tri was actually great – I got to partake in that “increased blood flow = increased sensation” thing they advertise! But my tummy is so big so early now, that it REALLY impedes the action. Tetris, yes. So we have had to come up with other solutions.
    **********WARNING*************
    TMI spoiler alert, leave now if you are too delicate to continue. You have been warned.
    ******************************
    I don’t tend to be able to climax when not in a facing position. Dunno if it’s mental or physical, but for it to work for me, I really need to be facing the DH. Sooooooo, that’s a bit of a problem with BLOOP BELLY here.
    Also, pregnancy gives me a dryness problem. Meaning, if I’m not actively getting more aroused/closer to climax, my personal lube factory shuts down for business for the rest of the night.
    Fortunately, I am not male and do not have the blue-balls problem.
    So, my two pieces of advice for anyone with pregnant sex woes:
    (1) enjoy what you can and let go what you can’t (in my own life this plays out to be, do it the way i like it until the lube factory quits and then switch to a way he can finish quick, and just be glad for the fun while it was fun) and
    (2) LUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUBE! Invest in K-Y! AND THEN USE IT!
    If you have a personal arousal issue that results in dryness, just let me tell you, BUY LUBE. It actually took me a while to be okay with this, I felt guilty for not being aroused enough to make my own wetness. But I feel worse not letting him finish because I’m too dry and painful. So, LUUUUBBE.

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