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SEX AND PREGNANCY: PHYSICAL CHANGES

As the pregnancy progresses there is a multitude of new sensations and physical changes. Some women welcome the changes. Heather recalls, ‘I couldn’t wait to get into maternity clothes. As soon as I got the positive pregnancy test I wanted to rush out and buy some just to show the world that I was pregnant. I loved seeing myself getting bigger. The only problem was that I kept bumping into tables and doorways because I’d misjudge my size. I’d stand side-on to the mirror in the bathroom and check out my profile. Jeff loved it too. We used to lie close together and feel the baby moving inside. Sometimes when we were making love we would feel a great big kick and we’d crack up laughing.’

Other women despair over the stretch marks, the varicose veins, the hemorrhoids, and the expanding breasts and waistline. Chris hated the weight gain. T put on so much weight with the second pregnancy that I couldn’t stand to look at myself. I certainly didn’t feel the slightest bit attractive or sexy, so sex was a non-event for us until after the baby arrived and I was back to my normal size again.’

Like Chris, many women don’t feel like sex during pregnancy at all. This again is perfectly normal. Fiona described a fairly common pattern. ‘During the time I was trying to fall pregnant with all three babies I had a rampant libido, wanting to make love wherever we were, no matter what time of day. Because we were trying to create something we were very passionate about it. Once I fell pregnant, I had three atrocious experiences with morning sickness. Nausea and vomiting around the clock. I found it very difficult to just function day to day, let alone try to feel sexy. My libido hit an all-time low. Towards the end when the benefit of sex is to soften the cervix and hasten labor, that’s been a peak period for us again. It has a purpose then.’

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