The BuzzFeed Community asked readers to share their most shocking memories of getting back in the sack after childbirth, and holy wow did they come through. Warning: This isn't going to make you want to give birth.
1. "Plan ahead!"
Make sure you are well lubricated, self- or store-bought. Plan ahead! Feed baby and put him/her to sleep with a dry diaper — anything you can do to buy you some time. You do not want to rush the first time after having a baby. If it's wrong or rushed it will turn you off to anything after that. And your partner needs to be patient, take it slow, be tender, and LISTEN to you.
—Kaci Menefee-Willis, Facebook
2. "Sex after both of my babies has been awesome!"
Sex after both of my babies has been awesome! It is really so much better than before I had children. Obviously we can't be as adventurous sometimes, but it's a pretty great experience overall!
3. "Seeing my boyfriend tending to the baby turned me on..."
Seeing my boyfriend tending to the baby turned me on well before I was done healing. Five weeks of blue balls...but the female version!
—Jennifer Doucette, Facebook
4. "Like an itch that needed to be scratched for weeks."
Shockingly it felt really good. Like an itch that needed to be scratched for weeks.
5. "My advice is to take things slowly..."
My advice is to take things slowly, and make sure you have plenty of foreplay, and lube if you need it.
6. "Nobody told me it would be like fucking a cactus."
Nobody told me it would be like fucking a cactus. No bottle, ENTIRE BOTTLE, of lube could take away the sharp, stabbing, prickly pain.
7. "You think you're done bleeding..."
You think you're done bleeding until you turn on the lights and your sheets are stained and your husband's junk and thighs are covered in blood.
—Hannah Erikson, Facebook
8. On "being stitched back together nice and tight..."
Uh...that being stitched back together nice and tight after an episiotomy is only a good thing for him....
—Doagae Porbeni, Facebook
9. "Can you believe a baby fit out of that?!"
Saying "can you believe a baby fit out of that?!" mid-romp isn't something you want to hear. And be prepared for sudden fanny farts. They can happen at any moment.
11. "I was terrified that my wounds would reopen..."
I was terrified that my wounds would reopen, because every time my boyfriend and I tried, it hurt as if they were about to rip apart. Turns out it was just knots from when they stitched me up that just needed some massaging. After a few fun sexcapades, everything felt back to normal!
—Jessica Garcia, Facebook
12. "Sex can hurt even if you didn't deliver vaginally."
Sex can hurt even if you didn't deliver vaginally. I had some pain after my first C-section.
—Meghan Marsana Yoho
13. "Never believe the old wives' tale that you can't get pregnant whilst breastfeeding..."
Use protection and never believe the old wives' tale that you can't get pregnant whilst breastfeeding... My two youngest are only 12 months apart.
—Peta Hurley-Hill, Facebook
14. "It could take over a year to give a crap about sex again."
It could take well over a year to even give a crap about sex again. It could also take that long for it to feel good.
15. "It's like my vagina got rearranged..."
Squirting… Yeah, it started happening. It's like my vagina got rearranged and squirting now happens.
16. "It's been two weeks, let's do it now!"
"Who says we have to wait six weeks? It's been two weeks, let's do it now!"
^ biggest mistake ever.
17. "I never expected the dreadful feeling of fear..."
I never expected the dreadful feeling of fear that came over me when we tried one night. I just kept picturing and remembering the pain of childbirth. It took a lot of alcohol to go through with it.
19. "It's been 12 weeks and still! Ouch!!"
It doesn't just hurt the FIRST time!!!! It's been 12 weeks and still! Ouch!!
—Meredith Montz, Facebook
20. "I lied to my husband about it just to get a couple more weeks of 'vacation.'"
My doctor gave me the clear four weeks after my C-section and I nearly cried from the fear. I think I may have even lied to my husband about it just to get a couple more weeks of "vacation."
—Jessica Lynne, Facebook
21. "You will not want sex more than sleep."
You will not want sex more than sleep. And it can take an entirely different method to orgasm.
—Sarah Senn, Facebook
23. "I DO NOT want to give you handies or BJs."
During the postpartum time I am healing, I DO NOT want to give you handies or BJs.
—Riana Marie Stromski, Facebook
24. "I wish I would have known..."
I wish I would have known how dry your "lady bits" are while breastfeeding.
—Maria Antonella, Facebook
25. "It felt like going down a water slide..."
It felt like going down a water slide in August with no water.
26. "Like a viiiiiirgin..."
"Like a virgin…touched for the very first time. Like a viiiiiirgin."
27. "Breastfeeding presents a new world of being able to use your boobs for two COMPLETELY different purposes."
Breastfeeding presents a new world of being able to use your boobs for two COMPLETELY different purposes.... That is somewhat difficult to get used to. But totally OK and workable once you get over it.
—Kelsey Hughes, Facebook
28. "Suddenly your partner is getting a milk facial."
No one told me that you sometimes have a letdown during sex and suddenly your partner is getting a milk facial.
—Anya Barry, Facebook
29. "My husband was cool with drinking some of my breast milk..."
I was surprised that my husband was cool with drinking some of my breast milk; he was like, "NBD, it tastes sweet."
30. "My boobs became the least sexual thing ever..."
It hurt like the first time for about six months no matter how much lube we used. Also, thanks to breastfeeding, my boobs became the least sexual thing ever and any touching resulted in immediate turn off.
31. "It made my nipples raw."
Breastfeeding made my boobs huge, but also made my nipples raw. My husband did not understand this.
32. "It takes a lot for me to get in the mood..."
It takes a lot for me to get in the mood…like, my son can't be in the house, otherwise I'm thinking about him and worried he may start crying and need me. We get our parents to watch him so we can try to relax and have some fun together — that helps.
33. "You're just about to unleash all that new parent stress..."
Picture this…you are finally healed enough to have THE sex. It's a little awkward because you still look four months pregnant but husband is understanding so you start to kiss and then hands are everywhere and you're getting into it…you're just about to unleash all that new parent stress when WAAAAAAHHHH. Your baby screams bloody murder and you have to stop. The end. Welcome to Parenthood SexLand.
34. "Babies have a sixth sense..."
I wish I knew that babies have a sixth sense that kicks in the second mom and dad try to have sex. I'm pretty sure our second kid wants to make sure a third kid will never be a possibility.
—Jeanette Leggour, Facebook
35. "He doesn't want a sibling."
I wish I would have known that babies wake up and prevent you from getting back on that bologna pony. My son was like six months when me and my hubby started getting intimate again; my child woke up right before the action, and he cried and cried as if telling us that he doesn't want a sibling. Wait till your child grows up and moves out — then maybe you will have privacy and a normal sex life again. Maybe.
—Shirleyann Rafaela Cameron, Facebook
36. "I was surprised by how protective of my body I feel."
I was surprised by how protective of my body I feel. At least for me, I felt like I just carried my baby, gave birth, and I'm now nourishing and feeding my baby with my body, so be nice to me. I felt weirdly protective of my breasts. Like, "No, don't touch them!"
—Janinne Barris, Facebook
37. "I didn't realize how embarrassed I was going to be..."
I didn't realize how embarrassed I was going to be about my C-Section scar the first few months.
—Garah Louise, Facebook
38. "My body was working really hard."
Between pregnancy and breastfeeding I remember feeling like my body was just working really hard all the time. It took me a while not to feel like sex was just another demand on my body — I used to get really pissed off when my partner would come on to me. Plus, I didn't feel sexy in my new skin, so I really didn't want sex. Eventually, though, through motherhood I came to be more comfortable with my body than I ever had been pre-baby, and sex is actually better than before.
39. "I still don't feel as sexy as he thinks I am."
The worst part for me was not having the same gorgeous body I had before I had a baby. The two long-term relationships I have had since then have both been SO SUPPORTIVE AND ADORING of my body. I'm the one that hates it, not them. If I could tell women anything, including myself, it would be to stop comparing yourself to what you used to be and take their compliments. I still don't feel as sexy as he thinks I am, but he really does think I am.
—Sarah Jean Rosenberg, Facebook
40. "To have sex again after something so monumental happening is a bit daunting."
To have sex again after something so monumental happening in your most private and sensitive of areas is a bit daunting. And you may need to put it off longer than medically necessary just to build some trust in your new post-baby body.
—Marianne Douglass, Facebook
41. "It definitely took a bit to get my groove back..."
It definitely took a bit to get my groove back, but after two kids I'm so much more in tune with my body, its likes and dislikes, and I honestly enjoy sex much more after having kids. It generally feels better than before!
42. "Having an understanding and patient partner makes all the difference."
Having an understanding and patient partner makes all the difference. There are lots of ways to be affectionate and intimate without penetration, and someone who loves you will have no problem waiting till you are truly ready — both before and after kids.
43. "You're different somehow."
The first time postpartum was scary. And awkward. You're still attracted to your partner but you're different somehow, and you don't know if it's going to hurt or what. But, take it slow and eventually everything gets back to normal — or at least you begin to define a new normal.
44. "Now I find it to be more pleasurable than before!"
It felt like hellfire until maybe like 10 weeks postpartum. Now I find it to be more pleasurable than before!
45. "Only you know what your body can handle!"
Only you know what your body can handle! Remember that the pain you felt won't last forever and try to enjoy yourself.
You birthed a baby. You can do this. Now good luck out there, and don't forget your lube.
Note: Submissions have been edited for length and/or clarity