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Sex after children

(135 Posts)
Johnsfour Mon 12-Nov-12 13:27:53

I know nothing is "normal" in anyones relationship.....

My wife/partner is off sex. Two children quite close together. First one 2 and six months. Second, just one. In calender 2012 we have made love twice......in the year before, ( after first, then pregnant with second), possibly 5 times ( including the conception of number 2).

Both natural births, both pretty quick, no major complications. Now, no libido, no interest, excuses ( tired, just do not feel like it) and specific reasons; "everything just feels different down there".

Not an easy question to ask friends: "how quickly did you get back to occasional sex, yet along regular sex ?". I have been as understanding and patient as I think I can be. The current position, is no sex, no sex envisaged for the indefinite future.

I should add, before marriage three years ago, we made love keenly almost every evening we spent together. Regular, enjoyable ( for both of us) and initiated by both of us.

It has become a taboo subject between us, and I am not keen on getting pushed away ........

what to do ? Advice ? How quickly do other couples get back to occasional sex ?

Offred Thu 15-Nov-12 20:03:32

Who stated the coercion was only ever coming from the partner? You pick bits out of context in my posts and you assume and misinterpret until they mean what you would like them to.

Bumpstart Thu 15-Nov-12 18:44:21

Monkey face grace. I don't think you are hmm for having a sex drive 4 days after birth. I do think you are very unusual. please read the comments on this thread about shagging in the post natal ward.

FastLoris Thu 15-Nov-12 18:05:35

Offred -

Loris you are the one asking OMC to explain why someone who feels they don't want sex shouldn't acquiesce to pressure to have it

Who said anything about pressure?

OMC said noone should have sex when they don't want it. He said nothing whatsoever about the reason for having it being pressure.

It is clear to me that you don't understand consent.For example woman doesn't want sex, man does, woman acquiesces to sex because of the pressure of the man still wanting/expecting sex despite her not wanting to, if man attempts to ascertain consent the woman's feelings, if she is freely able to speak about them, would become apparent, if she isn't then there must be coercion.

It depends what you mean by her being not "freely able to speak about them". You seem to assume that if she doesn't freely speak about them, it must be entirely because of something the man is doing to stop her. The dynamics of communication are of course often, in reality, much more complex than that.

But more to the point, your example is only one of many in which people may have sex without wanting it. You keep trying to bring it back to coercion, which was not in the original statement and has nothing to do with my question about it.

Fact is most men don't ask, don't feel they need to ask and actually lots, like you - don't seem to care. Which is why charbon asked that question.

And now you're making vile assumptions about me based on this strange parallel conversation that you've invented, just because I don't automatically accept your completely illogical point of view every time you try to change the subject. Nice.

Totally ridiculous that you wouldn't answer that question AND said my answering the question you asked was irrelevant.

I have no problem with answering Charbon's question. I'm not entirely sure whether she meant it as a general question ("you" as in "one") or whether she was soliciting my personal feelings about it. But I never said I wasn't happy to answer it. What I said was that it wasn't the question we were discussing. Because it wasn't.

With all due respect you seem absolutely hell bent on changing this conversation to one about something else. I'm happy to clarify my position or answer questions about anything else, so there's no need to go about assuming what you think it must be. But I also stand by my right to ask a simple question about a statement OMC made and invite him to answer it, or anyone else interested to chime in. If you're not interested in THAT question, then you are free to ignore it rather than insisting on derailing.

OneMoreChap Thu 15-Nov-12 13:12:02

There's a category difference between feeling desire for sex, wanting to make your partner feel good, letting someone make love to you and not stopping someone.

Consent isn't mysterious...

If you don't want to have sex, don't have it.
If you don't want sex your self, but don't mind if your partner wants you and let them make love to you... that's up to you.

We don't want people pressured into sex... and it happens both ways, FWIW...

Offred Thu 15-Nov-12 07:12:22

Charbon's question even.

Offred Thu 15-Nov-12 07:12:04

The point of loris' question was to explain why having sex when you don't want to to "make your partner happy" WAS coercion. A partner that respected and loved you and didn't feel entitled to your body would not want to have sex on with you when you didn't want to, they would care about how you felt.

Offred Thu 15-Nov-12 07:02:12

Loris you are the one asking OMC to explain why someone who feels they don't want sex shouldn't acquiesce to pressure to have it - the answer is because it is their body and they get to decide what to do with it.

It is clear to me that you don't understand consent.

For example woman doesn't want sex, man does, woman acquiesces to sex because of the pressure of the man still wanting/expecting sex despite her not wanting to, if man attempts to ascertain consent the woman's feelings, if she is freely able to speak about them, would become apparent, if she isn't then there must be coercion. Fact is most men don't ask, don't feel they need to ask and actually lots, like you - don't seem to care. Which is why charbon asked that question.

Totally ridiculous that you wouldn't answer that question AND said my answering the question you asked was irrelevant.

Joiyuk Thu 15-Nov-12 01:20:23

Me and my DH go through phases. We go ages with none and then have loads in a week. Probably. Week of every month we are at it like rabbits and then the rest of the time I don't want any. We only have one two year old though, and he's a good sleeper so I get rest at night (mostly). I would definitely say that resentment makes me want to push him away sometimes though. If he doesn't do his share round the house (he hardly ever does if I'm honest) and if I've been mauled by out two year old all day I just want to sit at opposite ends of the sofa from him.

FastLoris Thu 15-Nov-12 00:36:51

Charbon -

Isn't the question why would you want sex with someone who didn't want it, Loris?

No, that's not the question we're discussing (as raised by OMC). That's a different question.

FastLoris Thu 15-Nov-12 00:35:04

Why shouldn't a person who doesn't want sex feel they don't have to do it anyway? Because it is their body and their right to decide what to do with it.

Who said they shouldn't feel that? I'm not saying anything about what anyone should or shouldn't do. If someone doesn't want to have sex, then it makes perfect sense to me, all else being equal, that they don't.

But the fact is that some people DO have sex when they don't want to, and not just because of being coerced. I'm similarly not telling them they should do otherwise either - it's a free country and people can do what they like as long as they dont hurt others as far as I'm concerned. OMC said they "shouldn't" do this. I'm yet to see a reason why they shouldn't, and for some reason all the discussion seems to be trying to shift the question to other issues.

FastLoris Thu 15-Nov-12 00:30:03

Offred -

If there's no coercion a person who doesn't want sex doesn't normally have sex so it is a moot point.

Well that's blatently untrue. Lots of people have sex when they don't personally want to, in order to make their partner happy, without being in any way coerced to do so. And then there are also people who have sex for extraneous reasons (seeking validation, manipulating others etc.) when they don't actually want the sex, but do it without any coercion, even instigating it themselves.

The person having sex with the person who doesn't want to cannot have taken adequate steps to ascertain consent because the person they are having sex with doesn't want to have sex.

That's a complete non-sequiteur and makes no sense. I suppose it's based on your presmie above that a person who doesn't want sex wouldn't have sex. As I've pointed out that premise is false, so the rest of this doesn't follow.

Situations that could be described as "she didn't say no" for example and is still rape and can be prosecuted if the woman complains. It is the test of reasonable belief of consent. You have to demonstrate what steps you have taken to ascertain consent.

That's true, but irrelevant. We're not discussing cases where the woman doesn't consent, or even where consent is uncertain. We're discussing what happens when one partner (of either sex) doesn't personally WANT to have sex - and those cases can easily involve full and explicit consent.

Charbon Wed 14-Nov-12 23:41:30

Isn't the question why would you want sex with someone who didn't want it, Loris?

Offred Wed 14-Nov-12 23:23:49

Feel they have to do it anyway!

Offred Wed 14-Nov-12 23:23:29

Why shouldn't a person who doesn't want sex feel they don't have to do it anyway? Because it is their body and their right to decide what to do with it.

Offred Wed 14-Nov-12 23:22:04

If there's no coercion a person who doesn't want sex doesn't normally have sex so it is a moot point. The person having sex with the person who doesn't want to cannot have taken adequate steps to ascertain consent because the person they are having sex with doesn't want to have sex. Situations that could be described as "she didn't say no" for example and is still rape and can be prosecuted if the woman complains. It is the test of reasonable belief of consent. You have to demonstrate what steps you have taken to ascertain consent.

FastLoris Wed 14-Nov-12 23:09:04

Not wanting sex is not the same thing as not consenting to it.

The statement was about somebody having sex when they don't want to, not about being made to have sex when they don't want to.

Desire is a separate issue from consent. You can rape someone even though they want to have sex (they may well not consent for whatever reason, despite wanting it), and you can have consensual sex with someone who doesn't particularly want it, but agrees to do it anyway.

But most importantly - the statement was made from the POV of the person having sex when they don't want it. OMC didn't say that someone else shouldn't have sex with them, he said that they shouldn't have sex.

I don't understand why. People do things they don't particularly want to do all the time, for all kinds of reasons.

Offred Wed 14-Nov-12 21:32:28

bangs head off wall

Offred Wed 14-Nov-12 21:31:43

Er because that's a rape if it is woman who doesn't want to and a sexual assault if it is a man in heterosexual sex, you get the picture...

Did you not know that loris?

The law is clear in requiring that consent must be ascertained and not coerced and that it is up to the person seeking sexual activity to takes steps to ascertain that consent beforehand...

FastLoris Wed 14-Nov-12 21:13:22

OMC -

no-one should have sex if they don't want to.

Why not?

FastLoris Wed 14-Nov-12 21:12:24

Offred -

A partner who insists on their right to a sexual relationship but will not leave expects either to exercise a claim over their partner's body or to seek sex outside the relationship. A partner who is entitled to decide they don't want sex is not entitled to trick, manipulate or stonewall their partner over it in order to keep them in a relationship. Monogamy is not more important than respect for autonomy.

Well I certainly agree with all that, so I guess I see where you're coming from.

Offred Wed 14-Nov-12 18:16:43

(I was worried something I'd said had been misconstrued based on what OMC had incorrectly interpreted)

Offred Wed 14-Nov-12 18:15:59

We are just agreeing with each other then charbon in that case!

Offred Wed 14-Nov-12 18:14:00

No, since it isn't a given that the other person will be unhappy with that in all cases and they aren't a parent, they are a partner. It would be very paternalistic to say "I feel I don't want to continue one part of our relationship so I am not going to talk to you about it or give you a choice I am just going to leave you." What is the actual problem with the concept of communicating about issues like this and making mutually beneficial decisions or choosing to separate because you can't?

Charbon Wed 14-Nov-12 17:45:29

If a person doesn't want sex or a relationship with a partner, then it is more ethical to organise a structural break in a relationship that has ended anyway.

If however they don't want sex but they are still invested in a relationship, ending the entire relationship might meet no-one's needs and that unilateral action takes away the other person's choices to say 'I am prepared to stay in this relationship despite there being no sex'. Behaving ethically in relationships is all about giving people choices and being transparent about the choices that are being made. Not having sex is an open and transparent choice which leaves the other person free to make their own choices. Deciding to keep a response choice secret, is unethical behaviour.

OneMoreChap Wed 14-Nov-12 17:21:06

So, presumably, if one partner decides they don't want sex any more, surely they should be the one to leave, not kick the partner out/drive them away?

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