Naked Talk with JESS

Sex After Childbirth with Samantha Sutton - Be Brave Mama

September 14, 2021 Jess Brassington
Naked Talk with JESS
Sex After Childbirth with Samantha Sutton - Be Brave Mama
Show Notes Transcript

In this episode with Naked Talk with Jess, we are chatting with Samantha Sutton, the owner of Be Brave Mama.

We discuss how Be Brave Mama is working towards normalizing painful penetration and how sex after childbirth is a journey on its own.

Highlights:

  • We highlight the reasons for painful penetration after child birth 
  • We discuss what can be done to help with painful penetration
  • We are given helpful resources for women who are pregnant, breastfeeding or new to this world of motherhood
  • Ways to improve our sex life after child birth 

Referenced previous episodes can be found here:
Love your Labia Series: Vagina & Vulva Questions
https://www.buzzsprout.com/1772215/8441502

Peri Peri Quite Contrary: Perimenopause
https://www.buzzsprout.com/1772215/8441497

Be Brave Mama website - https://www.bebravemama.com
Email: [email protected]
Facebook:https://www.facebook.com/bbravemama
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/bbravemama/

Postpartum freebie link:
https://samanthasutton927.lpages.co/sex-while-postpartum-breastfeeding

Support the show
https://www.patreon.com/NakedTalkwithJESS


Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/NakedTalkwithJESS)
Jess:

Hey, y'all welcome back to naked. Talk with Jess. I'm so excited about this series. We have Samantha Sutton and she's all things birth and all things, baby. In this episode, we're going to be talking about painful penetration after childbirth. Welcome to the podcast, Sam, how are you doing great.

Samantha:

Thank you. I'm so excited to be here.

Jess:

Thank you for joining us. So tell us a little bit about you and what you do when you help these women. Pretty much through out the, different stages from prenatal to. Postpartum and then life after baby.

Samantha:

Yeah, so basically I'm starting the business that I wish I had found when I was having my babies. Because there's just not enough information out there for women going through this huge transition. These things are all like taboo topics. And we don't find out about them until they're happening to us. And we're like struggling alone and feeling isolated. So the thing that always comes up is like, is it just me? And no, it's not. So we need to spread that message.

Jess:

Yes. And I'm so glad you're doing that. So my oldest is 17 and I didn't know anyone who breastfed. I kind of just figured it out, you know, on my own, how to start. And then I joined a local group where I lived at the time. And it, it was, it felt isolating for a long time, especially after baby number two came along 18 months later. So you're nursing and you're pregnant. And then you're like, is this safe? Is it okay? And you can't really ask in my case, my family or friends, because no one had that experience. So I love that you're doing that and I think one of the, well, one of the main purposes I started naked talk with Jess was to talk about things that are taboo, that we're not talking about. But like you said, so many are, you know, maybe going through that. So thank you for doing that and your work that you do. Thank you.

Samantha:

I hope I can help some mamas out there.

Jess:

Yeah. So, well, let's talk a little bit about painful penetration after childbirth and that's something that. I know a lot of women struggle with, because I think, oh my goodness. I've just given birth to this tiny little human, but then I've got a husband there, like as he wanting sex or, you know, or the last thing I want is anything or anyone to go around. The area that just, you know, maybe it was traumatizing. So share a little bit about that. What are some reasons, I guess, that it might be painful or what can we expect?

Samantha:

Sure. I do want to preface it by saying that every woman's experience and every birth is different, so it might look different for everybody. Some women feel like powerful and sexy with this transition. They just had and want to jump right back in. But a lot of times that's not the case and it can be, you know, like weeks or months before you get there. So penetration pain after birth is completely normal. And you'll go back for your most doctors, say your postpartum checkup at six weeks, but that's not like the six week mark. Isn't like, okay. Return to normal life. That's, you know, technically your vagina has healed from having a baby. You might not necessarily be ready for intimacy or, you know, any other part of returning to normal life. But the reason why penetration pain is so common even months afterwards is because of hormones lower estrogen is causing less blood flow in your body and is making your tissues and your vagina thinner and more delicate. So any type of touching in that area might feel a lot more sensitive than it did before.

Jess:

Yeah and I think that's something I just kind Of visualize the six weeks, you know, I visualize a big calendar with a big red X, you know, or what our heart or whatever you want to put on it. And that just really puts a lot of pressure on the woman who, like you said, it's like, okay, we're all clear you know, we can do all the things. So I liked that. You said that, and I think that's something that's important to talk about. Before you have the baby, right with your partner before you have the baby, and you can really avoid a lot of miscommunication there because a lot of times a partner might feel like, okay, you know, on the other side, why does she not want to have sex now? So I wish more doctors would say that. What have you seen just in your experience or other women, are doctors really saying that? Or is it kind of more of a, this is a six week kind of clear to go thing?

Samantha:

Well, in my experience, they're not really saying much other than, you know, you you're clear to return to like things as normal, but they really aren't qualified for that. And they aren't qualified to give you a thorough, like pelvic floor examination. So or like diastasis recti like a lot of times they'll say that you don't even have that issue and it turns out you really do. They're just not qualified to diagnose that.

Jess:

Yeah and I think it's, it's really important to say it's not that it's anything against the doctors at all. It's just a lot of times. They don't have that. That's not their specialty. That's not their specialty. But, and you're changing this. Women need those resources when they become pregnant, they need to know, or were four. Then even these are my choices, these are some resources that can really make this the best experience possible. And as I will know, 17 years into parenthood, it doesn't stop with childbirth and right after there's all different stages. So what are some other reasons that you you've seen that it could be painful after childbirth.

Samantha:

So other than the estrogen levels, making your tissues and your vagina feel more sensitive, it also can cause vaginal dryness and that is especially true. If you are expressing any kind of milk. So if you're breastfeeding or pumping, and that can be the case like throughout your breastfeeding journey. Those estrogen levels stay low and can cause that dryness the whole time. So that's a big complaint that a lot of women have.

Jess:

Yeah. And that that's another thing we've talked about on the podcast is hormonal changes throughout. We've done a menopause. What is that series? Then there's post-menopausal and this is just another one of those things I've shared where the first time I actually looked at my vulva. I was pregnant. And I was like, what the heck is that? It looked different than it did before you got pregnant, but different and growing up, I didn't really look at my vulva a lot. I kind of would. Wash my body quickly and bypass it and not linger too long. So it's been, it's been interesting, just the changes that occur with our vulva over time. And just like you said, every woman's experience is different. We talk about vulva variety there, you know? Yes. There's certain things to look for. And if you haven't heard those series, you can, listen to my love your vulva series. But, we talk about those different things, but yeah, things change. And then they may never be like they were before you had children. So, what are some things that we can do about that or to help that woman that says, oh my goodness, either I'm pregnant or I'm thinking of having babies or I. I just had a baby, what are some things that they can do?

Samantha:

When you decide you're ready for intimacy again, or even just want to try it out, you definitely want to start slow because things are probably not going to feel the way they did before. And that's okay. And that's normal some ways to like ease into intimacy are to, you know, reinitiate for a play for sure. Which I it was that most women, I think would, would, anyway. So you can start slow, especially if you're, you an exhausted new mom you can start with like gentle massage or just other ways that your partner can comfort like whatever is your preference. Start with those things instead of like jumping right back into penetration. Yes, for the vaginal dryness,, lubrication is, you know, it's, it's not something that's saying, like, there's something wrong with you or that you need to feel guilty about. It's a tool to help you enjoy intimacy with your partner. so that's definitely something to utilize and it can even be fun. You know, there's flavored lubrication tingling. Lubrications all kinds of things that you can, you can try out for that and you can definitely, you know, ease into it. In my experience, it was like, it was so sensitive that it was like, it felt really good, but we had to move really slow in the beginning. So it's probably not going to be the same type of intimacy you had before like if you were kind of really you know, aggressive in the bedroom before you're gonna, you're probably gonna want to be a little bit more gentle when you start off but the thing to keep in mind is you did just birth, you know, a baby, whatever size, and that was a big change for your vagina. But the vagina is very Lastic. Like this is what it was created to do it expands for your baby, but then it retracts, it starts going back to its normal size immediately after you give birth. So. I might not feel completely the same as it was before, but it's still going to, you know, Return to quote unquote normal and, and function the way it's supposed to, again, for the bedroom.

Jess:

Yeah. And that's, that's one of the things, you know, and I, and I share on the podcast all the time. Because there is so little that we talk about sex, or most of us do growing up. There's a lot of misinformation and you hear, I remember hearing, you know, growing up. Oh yeah if a woman had a lot of babies, like, oh, her her vagina is like a cup of warm water. horrible things, you know, and then you're like, how's. Is that going to be me? And so I think you just, just educating us on that piece and then also educating your partner that a lot of times men will say, oh, well, if you need lube, does that mean you're not turned on? We just we think a lot of times if we're turned on, we get wet. That's just it's kind of a common belief. So educating and communicating with your partner is so important. Educating yourself first and then being able to talk about it. because your partner may feel like you're not turned on when that's not the case at all. Right. And so well that that's, if you have a vaginal birth, but what about so cesarean, is that affected anyway? Or what can you share about that?

Samantha:

Yeah, so, just because you have a cesarean and birth and the baby doesn't like come out of your vagina. You're still going to have changes in that area because of hormones again. So, the estrogen affects you, whether you had a cesarean or a vaginal birth and it can make that area sensitive and dry. So, methods will apply there, if you had a vaginal birth, so, you know, easy to, into it or play lube and then for the scenario, cesarean incision specifically you can massage around your incision and that will help it heal quicker. So that, that area will heal quicker and feel better sooner.

Jess:

And I seem to remember when I was pregnant, looking into things that perineal massage. Is that something you can do while you're pregnant to kind of get the area more prepared or is that okay?

Samantha:

Yeah, there's no, like. Scientific you know, journal that I can quote this as, yes, this is definitely the case, but that's like, antidotal. Yeah. Just given NCS people, people will definitely say like perennial massage will help reduce your risk of tearing. so you can start that as early as you feel ready and pregnancy, but definitely in the third trimester when you're getting close to your due date.

Jess:

Hey, well, thank you. Well, let us know Samantha, where we can find you, because I think you are an amazing resource. For, like I said, a woman who is thinking of having a baby or who is pregnant or who is just in that. Maybe that after baby season in life and there's things that they don't want to talk about. I'm so glad that you're doing this. So can you share how to find you?

Samantha:

Yes. Thank you so I'm most active on Instagram, and you can find me there at the letter B and then brave mama. So that's be brave, mama. I also have a website www dot, be brave mama.com and that's all spelled out.

Jess:

Okay. All right. And I want to say one thing before we wrap up, when you mentioned lube, I've shared that early on in the podcast. Ingredients do matter, especially when you're putting something on such a sensitive area. So I do want to just say, make sure you get something that doesn't have chemicals. There are things that are, you know, really natural and I can actually, I'll put some links on there too. And if you have any. We can add that to the show notes, so sure.

Samantha:

And one more thing. I almost forgot to tell you, It's I feel like it should be part of every woman's, postpartum recovery, like process to have a pelvic floor, exam from a pelvic floor, physical therapist. So some pain is normal for sure. But. You should also be evaluated just to make sure everything is healing as well as it can. And that, you know, what exercises you can do to help your body return to normal and heal. after your birth, just doing kegels is not. Definitely was not what you want to do there. There's better ways to do it. That can help you heal quicker and give you a better experience.

Jess:

Great and I'll, we'll add some links to those resources as well in the show notes. So you can. Listen to this episode and then get started and let us know what you think. And hopefully you will reach out to Samantha and I will talk to y'all next time. Thanks Samantha.

Samantha:

Thanks for having me.