For many couples, deciding to try and have a baby is an exciting new chapter. However, the process of actively trying to conceive can sometimes take the fun and spontaneity out of sex. When your love life starts revolving around ovulation kits, calendars, and scheduled baby-making time, it’s easy to lose the natural passion.
Don’t despair! There are many ways to keep your sex life satisfying, playful and intimate during this journey. With a little creativity and commitment to nurturing your bond as lovers, you can minimize the stress and maximize the pleasure. Here are some tips and ideas to try:
Reduce Anxiety and Make Time for Yourself
Trying to conceive can be an anxious time, especially if it takes longer than expected. Stress hormones like cortisol can inhibit conception by affecting ovulation, sperm count and libido. Make time for relaxing self-care activities like yoga, meditation, or massage to lower stress levels. Exercise also helps release feel-good endorphins and improve self-confidence.
Spend time journaling or reflecting on your needs, desires and fantasies outside the bedroom. Discover what sights, sounds, textures or scenarios arouse you. Understanding your own mind and body better will translate into better sexual experiences. Share and explore each other’s erogenous zones in a spirit of curiosity and fun.
When baby-making sex becomes mechanical, shift the focus back to emotional intimacy. Spend quality time together doing non-sexual activities you both enjoy. Go on dates, cuddle up talking or dancing, give each other massages, take a weekend trip – anything that energizes your romantic bond. Gazing into each other’s eyes boosts oxytocin, the “love hormone” that facilitates conception and labor.
Prioritize affectionate touch, making out, and full-body sensuality. Take penetration off the table and explore pleasuring each other in creative ways, using hands, mouths, sex toys, role play or tantric practices. Orgasm produces hormones and endorphins that reduce stress and promote bonding. Make foreplay something to savor rather than a means to an end.
When you’re only having sex on prescribed fertile days, it can start to feel monotonous. Bring back the excitement of anticipation and seduction. Flirt via texts, emails or sticky notes. Compliment each other’s appearance and talents. Surprise your partner with romantic gestures like flowers or a sexy outfit.
Build sexual tension throughout the month with casual touches, innuendos, and heated exchanges. The dopamine rush of flirting stimulates libido and arousal for a steamier experience when you do make love. A little bit of “hard to get” energizes the chase.
Try New Things
Don’t limit yourself to the standard baby-making script. Change up the location, time of day, and positions to keep things novel and arousing. Have a mid-day rendezvous or break out that Kama Sutra book to discover new angles. Exchange massages by candlelight. Make a shared fantasy come true. Linger in bed naked and feed each other chocolate-covered strawberries after.
Incorporate variety into foreplay too. Watch romantic or erotic films together, listen to playlists that evoke moods, use silky fabrics and feather ticklers, experiment with power dynamics and role reversal. Good sex requires playfulness, creativity and presence.
Use Lubricants Generously
When the focus is on conception rather than arousal, natural vaginal lubrication may be lacking. This can make sex uncomfortable or even painful. Use commercial lubricants liberally to enhance sensations and avoid inflammation. Water-based lubes designed for conception are ideal; they nourish sperm and emulate fertile cervical fluid. We recommend Pre-Seed as our first choice. Conceive Plus or Babystart FertilSafe Plus are good alternatives also.
Massage oils add glide and sensuality to foreplay. Lubricants also make manual and oral stimulation more pleasurable for both partners. Don’t be shy about reapplying frequently – wetter is better! For women prone to vaginal dryness, replenishing moisture improves the odds of conception and sexual satisfaction.
Relax Pelvic and PC Muscles
Trying too hard to conceive can lead to clenching pelvic floor muscles during sex, which interferes with conception and pleasure. Do Kegel exercises daily to strengthen these important muscles. But during intercourse, remember to actively relax the area. If you notice tension, take a few deep breaths and scan your body to release any tightness.
Get out of the mindset that the more active you are in bed, the better your chances. For optimum fertility, the vagina needs to open to allow sperm to enter. Anxiety and overexertion inhibit this natural receptivity. Focus on softening your body, staying present in sensations, and letting go.
Make Sex About More than Orgasm
For men, ejaculation is essential for conceiving. But for women, prioritizing orgasm can be counterproductive. If it becomes a goal instead of a pleasure, it creates performance pressure. Then anxiety inhibits arousal. Remember, sex offers many fulfilling dimensions besides climax – emotional intimacy, erotic pleasure, playfulness, stress release, etc.
Take penetration off the table some nights and learn new ways to achieve bliss. Explore tantric breathing, sensual massage, sex toys, role playing and other ways to tap turn-ons. Learn your body’s responses without a fertility agenda. Orgasms will come more easily if you stop trying to force them. Savor the journey, not just the destination.
Let Go of Conception Myths
You’ll hear many myths about conception sex: certain positions work best, lying still after helps, etc. But none are backed by science. Sperm navigate the cervix within seconds, so gravity and position are irrelevant. Likewise, all fluids stay where they belong, so leaking semen doesn’t affect fertility.
Such myths often stem from outdated paternalistic attitudes about conception happening only when women are passive. But men have no biological advantage in fertilization. Forget “old wives’ tales” and make love in ways that feel good to both of you. (However, do stay well hydrated!)
Cuddle After Sex
While you don’t have to stay still after sex, do make time for intimacy. Releases of oxytocin and prolactin during orgasm induce relaxation and sleepiness, so cuddle up together afterwards. Set alarms so you can nap or doze without worrying. Enjoy the delicious intimacy of skin-to-skin contact.
Post-sex bonding strengthens your relationship, eases stress, and helps prepare you emotionally for the intense bonds of parenthood. Gazing into each other’s eyes, stroking gently, whispering affectionately are all great ways to come down from lovemaking. Don’t underestimate the power of afterplay!
Trying to conceive can be stressful, but don’t let it undermine the joy of sex for you as a couple. Nurture intimacy in and out of bed. Communicate desires openly and non-judgmentally. Make time for romance, play, relaxation and affection. The more connected you feel, the more pleasure you’ll experience.
While conception may require certain biological ingredients, there are still countless ways to make it meaningful, exciting and fulfilling. Keep experimenting until you find what works for you. With patience and mindfulness, you can have both great sex and great chances for pregnancy success during this journey.
Photo by Zoom Baby