I've had guys come into my practice wondering where the woman they met is. The woman who'd have sex anytime, anyplace, anyhow. Motherhood changes all that for most of us. Being free and being a parent are contradictory roles. Being a parent often means being anxious, on guard. Being a lover requires the ability to let go, be free, get lost in the senses.
The roles we take on can in time add up to unmet expectations and needs for everyone all around. An expectation for affection in a relationship is understandable, but the potential consequence of expressing it is rejection. And eventually resentment. There is nothing left to give from a person who has little sense of ownership over themselves.
After having my first child I found myself right there too. Each day being so needed. Rarely a pause or moment to myself. I felt that my husband (being a grown man) needed to back off and drop any expectation that I should have anything left to give him. I was beyond touch satiated, always holding someone. One particular day, I was shirtless and bending down picking laundry up off the bathroom floor. My toddler walked over and started to nurse off of one of my floppy dangling breasts. Troy walks past the open door, peers in and laughs “It’s like you’re a goat”. He thought it was hilarious. Great, goat boobs. I have goat boobs. As if I didn’t already feel less sexy than I’d ever felt in my life.
My boobs hadn't felt like they were mine since... I didn't know. Forever? They were constantly on loan. Would I have given up nurturing my babies to feel sexual again? Of course not. At that point I didn't realize that it might be possible to feel both nurturing and erotic in the same phase of life. Parenthood felt the opposite of sexy. For many of us, our sexual desire is at least partially hinged on feeling worthy of desire. Can’t feel it. Don’t feel sexy. Don’t want to have sex. It has nothing to do with the attractiveness of our partner. It is about our attraction to our self.
-Excerpt from Krista Jarvis’ upcoming book, Fireworks: Lighting up your life with sparks of desire.