Who Has Time For Sex Anymore? (The Hot Kind, Anyway)

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When I was a new mother, a friend came by with her four-month-old daughter. We nursed, we ate, we drank and eventually the conversation – as it tends to do – turned to sex.

“Every time we get it on, he [BLEEP], and then we [BLEEP BLEEP], so he [BLEEP BLEEPS].”

Okay, so I’ve had to censor a few bits there, but the “what,” “where” and “how” of the story isn’t the point. The point is her prelude: “Every time.” Every time?! That suggests there have been more than, say, two. With a four-month-old in the room next door. Back then I couldn’t fathom the thought of getting back in the sack, and there she was having bleep bleeping bleep like a frat boy.

Four years later, I still dread the idea of getting back in the sack, unless it happens to be noon, the kids have passed out in the stroller and I’m – most essentially – alone.

At least post-partum I still had hope for a future filled with passionate nights informed by the Kama Sutra. Well, that future is now, and any texts that might have made things interesting have long since been carted off to Goodwill.

How did it – how did I – I get this way?

I used to be the kind of girl for whom euphemisms were invented. “Fun-loving.” “Good-time girl.” Men loved me. Women were suspicious of me. And I liked it that way. Frankly, I couldn’t get enough.

All that changed, of course, when I met my husband. I became less appealing to men and more appealing to women, but most crucially I became a goddess to him. And thus it has remained to this day. However implausibly.

I know what you’re thinking: I snagged him, he married me, we had our two children; the thrill of the chase is over.

This is true: the manly hands I once relished all over me are the same hands I now swat away in bed while reaching for my iPod. But there are so many other factors. Stress, exhaustion, dueling schedules, weight-gain. Is it the seven-year itch? Are we on the path to destruction? Or have I simply found – and fallen into an ardent extramarital affair with – my inner frigidity?

Whatever the case, sex and everything surrounding it – the anticipation, the guilt, the excuses – is excruciating. (And not in a physical way; that’s one excuse I can’t throw at this.) Yet the marital rolls in the hay I often hear about at koffee klatsch lead me to despair of my waning libido. Even if they are made up, exaggerated or the product of – ugh – blood, sweat and tears.

So here is my cry for help. Is there hope for me? Or are marriage and motherhood simply not conducive to having a sex life at all?

The novelist Carrie Jones votes for the latter in her book Cutting Up Playgirl: A Cheerful Memoir Of Sexual Disappointment.

“I remember the first time my girlfriends and I admitted that we all felt the same about married sex as parents: we couldn’t be bothered with it and felt guilty for not wanting to sleep with our husbands,” Jones told the Daily Mail when the book was published “It was a revelation. I remember thinking: ‘Thank God! It’s not just me!’”

Why does that not make me feel better?

Then again, will anything make me feel better?

Wait, don’t tell me, I know the answer. And it’s a four-letter word.

Hmm. Tell it to my friend… the [BLEEPING] [BLEEP].


(Photo: iStockphoto)