Spice Up Your Marriage After Kids

Rarely do new parents have much time for the sexy lingerie and whispers of sweet nothings from their partners. While it's normal to more tired after having kids, it doesn't mean your sex life is over. What are some of the common issues parents have when trying to that magical spark alive? How much intimacy is “normal”? And what are some practical tips to help rekindle the flame?

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    We explore the best apps to help you organize your life and entertain your little ones. Would you like to recommend an app for us to review? Leave a message through our website voicemail, or email us through our website.

  • The Daddy Complex

    Tales of bad parenting, accidental victories and abject panic from David Vienna, a father of twin boys. David also produces a YouTube video series called “Fighting With Babies,” in which an overwhelmed puppet father argues with his twin puppet babies.

Episode Transcript

Parent Savers
Spice Up Your Marriage After Kids


Please be advised, this transcription was performed from a company independent of New Mommy Media, LLC. As such, translation was required which may alter the accuracy of the transcription.

[Theme Music]

DR. NICK KARRAS: While newlyweds are often full of snuggles, cuddles and lots of intimacy, most parents will tell that after their babies are born, everything changes. Couples often loose touch with that sexual spark and attraction between them. I’m Dr. Nick Karras, a sexologist, and today we are talking all about spicing up you marriage after kids. This is Parent Savers, episode 91.

[Theme Music/Intro]

JOHNER RIEHL: Welcome back everybody to Parent Savers. We are broadcasting as usual from The Birth Education Center of San Diego. Parent Savers is weekly online on The Go Support Group from the newborn years to kinder garden. I’m you host, Johner Riehl. Thanks again to all of our loyal listeners who join us week in and week out and thanks also to those of you who are listening for the first time. As you may or may not know, you can join our Parent Savers Club and receive access to special bonus content after each show plus special giveaways and discounts from time to time.

And if you haven’t already, please make sure to download the free Parent Savers app, available on the Android and the iTunes market place and you automatically have access to all the great parenting advice and conversation we have on Parent Savers every week.
Let’s start this conversation by meeting everyone who is joining us in the room and we have a very full room today. I’ll start with myself. I’m Johner Riehl. Just about the time forty years old, in March coming up on forty and three boys – a seven years old, a four years old and a two years old.

TONY AND ALISA DILORENZO: We are Tony and Alisa DiLorenzo. We have two kids. We have an eleven years old son and an eight years old daughter and we are co-hosts of the top rated marriage broadcast on iTunes, “What an extraordinary marriage!”

JOHNER RIEHL: Nice, thanks for joining us.

MJ FISHER: Hi, I’m Mj Fisher, thirty-seven, yes, and I’m a stayed home mom to my son who is two and a half years old and besides that I’m actually a producer of the other broadcast, so one of the four that we have here, on the Book Group.

XUCHI EGGLETON: I’m Xuchi Eggleton and I’m half stayed home mom, I work part-time as a college instructor, but my daughter is almost four years old and this is my first time.

JOHNER RIEHL: Nice and welcome. I like that too – I’m at least a half stayed home dad too.

ERIN ESTEVES: Well and I’m Erin Esteves, otherwise known as O. G Mamasita, the officially geriatric Mamasita. I am forty-three going on forty-four and I have a two years old at home with whom I’m stay every single day. I love, but ku-ku.

DR. NICK KARRAS: And I’m Dr. Nick Karras, a sexologist and I’m also a father, I’m sixty-two and my son is now forty.


[Theme Music]

JOHNER RIEHL: Thanks for joining us, everyone. Before we jump in to the what sure will be an exiting conversation, we are going to take a look at an app. We do this from time to time on Parent Savers. We look at apps that are just released or maybe have been up for a bit and look at them, talk about them and tell whether or not it’s recommended for you to check out. And so today’s app is “Ducky Duck Family Photo” and it is a cute little app. “Ducky Duck” is actually a series of different apps. There is different “Ducky Ducks” app, I guess that is kind of the brand.

And in the “Family Photo” app, it’s really kind of face creation app, and there is no goals and result other then make a cute family photo, but these are the kind of games that I really like for my young kids to play and I actually meant our four years old and our, he’s still six, he’s about to turn seven, I said seven in the beginning so I referred to the confusion, but nobody really cares. So they love this type of game and I like them playing this type of games too where there is no necessarily goal or pressure, they are just kind of creating a face. And there are all sorts of funny options to do hair. It starts out with a randomly generated character.

Who can change the hair, the eyes, the mouth, outfit, the hat, if they want to have a moustache and overall they really liked it, had a good time, because they really like playing with this kind of app.

ERIN ESTEVES: Yeah, I think this app is adorable, you know. We were talking earlier about apps or games that might have an eng function or reason and I think that you could say that this is not only time-consuming, which sometimes can be really great, but also educational, because you know, like my two years old I can say “nose” you know, and he can try all the all the different noses. So in that sense it’s really fun and I’m giving it a “thumbs up”.

JOHNER RIEHL: I think that always when we talk about apps, there is the big debate. There are some parents that just don’t want their kids playing apps no matter what. There are some who probably take it a little bit too far on the (inaudible), I think. Is it a great app for the kids to get engage in? Could be a time wasting app? I’m not sure how educational it is. I think if done the right way with parents engaging with them, I think they’ll learn about parts of the face. But there is also no way to save the pictures to camera roll either. So that’s maybe a little bit of disappointment.

XUCHI EGGLETON: Well, I was thinking it’s the same thing, as obviously it’s the digital format, of the “Mister Potato Head”, so how educational is that?

ERIN ESTEVES: It also reminds me of (inaudible)

[Everybody talks]

ALISA DILORENZO: What I was thinking of is color forms. I didn’t say my age at the beginning, I’m thirty-nine and so I just dated myself by bringing color forms, but you are just mixing and matching. All of those things to make different faces and so you know, you don’t have the output, there is just the education. Let me play with something different and see what unlocks in my own creativity.

JOHNER RIEHL: Yes, so I would definitely give this a “thumbs up”. If somebody was thinking about getting an iPad or an iPhone or an Android, they have this for Android as well, I wouldn’t say “Oh check-out this is the cool thing that you can do on your phone!” I think that if you comfortable with playing apps then this is another great one. I don’t think that this is a groundbreaking example of how awesome apps are for kids, but still I would definitely be giving it a “thumbs up” and it’s totally added to a repretron and I know kids are going to love it.

XUCHI EGGLETON: I had a question since you guys are already sort of start playing with it. Are you able to put a mouth as an eye?

JOHNER RIEHL: No. No, that’s a good question. I guess it’s different (inaudible) in that way. This is more that you can switch the mouth.

XUCHI EGGLETON: Ok, so alright. So you we prescribed to that eyes are only eyes and noses are only noses.

MJ FISHER: Yeah, but you can put a goatee or a mustache on a girl. That’s kind of cool.

ERIN ESTEVES: You can put earrings on guys.

MJ FISHER: Like you know my son has a doll and he loves it and I want to foster that to not make it like you need to wear blue and play with trucks, so…

JOHNER RIEHL: Yeah, it’s totally very gender neutral. I mean we are saying that we are looking at some of the pictures and they are all kind of resemble guys, but there is definitely female flair that can be mixed in as well to make them all just kind of cute people with different funny eyes and mustaches.

ERIN ESTEVES: And I think it’s kind of need, because I had a niece who had not seen anybody that was different from us until she was about four, so she’s like never seen an African-American until she was like four and when she saw the fist African-American, she was kind of startled. So I think this is great, because it’s a good talking point. You can show how people are different, but essentially we are all made of the same thing – everybody’s got eyes and noses.

JOHNER RIEHL: Alright, so I think the Parent Savers verdict is a “thumbs up”. Definitely check it out. The “Ducky Duck Friends and Families Photos” and we’ll have a link to it on our website.

[Theme Music]

JOHNER RIEHL: Alright, it’s time to jump in today’s topic which is “Spicing up your marriage after kids”. Today we are talking with Dr. Nick Karras, thanks for joining us.

DR. NICK KARRAS: Thank you.

JOHNER RIEHL: Let’s start hearing a little about yourself. I mean for starters, what is a sexologist?

DR. NICK KARRAS: A sexologist is a person who studies what people do sexually and equally important, how they feel about it.

JOHNER RIEHL: Ok, and then you kind of help people… Is “fixing” the wrong word?

DR. NICK KARRAS: Yeah, because we don’t fix. We provide information. We let them… We feel like everybody knows who they are sexually and we just provide the information and we give permeation to explore that aspect.

JOHNER RIEHL: So what are some common issues you see with parents, right? Because babies change everything, including a lot of the sexual relationships that couples had before.

DR. NICK KARRAS: Oh, everything changes when you have… The intimacy mainly.

JOHNER RIEHL: And so intimacy like you see parents like that they are not having sex frequently enough or just the even reason level that they are not holding hands as much?

DR. NICK KARRAS: It has to take on whole new form – the intimacy is usually more sexual at the beginning of a relationship and it’s more erotic. When a child appears, the whole role of a parent changes. It’s, you know, it’s more of a nurturing thing, it’s more of a provider and it’s hard to bring those two together. You have to reinvent yourself sexually and what that means.

ERIN ESTEVES: That actually brings us to one of the questions that I got on Facebook. It was by Anonymous, no surprise there, but he was basically saying that after the child was born his wife was no longer sexually interested in him, because she felt like her body had to go to the child. She was exclusively breastfeeding and she did not feel sexual anymore. And he was wondering how he could, if he could, help her transition back to a sexual being.

ALISA DILORENZO: Well I have two kids and there was definetelly a phase in my life. I did breastfeed both children and I remember those early days when you just feel like it’s all going to the baby. And one the things Tony did, Tony was just very patient; yeah do there wasn’t this… I mean, with the first child, he was like “Ok, let’s jump back in the settle!” Child number two – we waited a little longer, but it was the tiny that I was attractive. A lot of the verbal Qs that I’d got from him instead of just being like “Ok, your body is mine. Let’s make that happen!” And I think that’s a lot of what husbands can do for their wives - is give them verbal encouragement. Because let’s face it – after we’ve carried a baby for nine months and we are all stretched and you know, our breasts are doing all kinds of stuff with milk production, we might not feel sexual. But to hear that from our husbands, that they still desire us and are in love with who we are, that’s a huge gift that a man can give his wife.

DR. NICK KARRAS: Yeah and I think it’s very true. The bonding that takes place between a mother and a child is producing that Oxytocin that you used to get with your partner and it’s not wrong, it’s empowering. The thing is let’s not loose the link between the couple also and that’s why you have redefine intimacy, just holding hands, leaning together and being close so that you are also doing that, because it’s just as harder on the man, because he is a provider. I mean for a lot of men it’s a big thing. I mean you’ve taken on a role of a child and that is changing the way that you think. And then to sexualize and to look at the mother of this beautiful child and what she went trough, it’s a difficult thing. So he is trying to regroup and rethink how to do that.

TONY DILORENZO: Yeah, and I got to agree with Dr. Nick on the changes that do happen. And from that time that you first meet to the time that you’re walking down the aisle, being sexually intimate in you marriage and now a child comes – there is a big change that happens. And one thing that I think many of us forget in marriage I that emotional intimacy is very, very important, that connection that we have when we communicate. Well yes, you wife just had the child, but communicate with her, find out what the changes are. You can see them, but ask her. Because what we find out often when we talk on our broadcast and we hear from our listeners is that that emotional intimacy is what sparks the sexual intimacy.

JOHNER RIEHL: There is this instinct where on some level you may want everything to just stay the same like when you met, or when you got married or like when you are engaged, but if you really take a step back – of course it’s going to evolve and of course thing are going to evolve and things are not going to be the same and I think that you have to work hard to discover and make it evolve I guess the way that works for you, guys. You guys can control the evolution.

DR. NICK KARRAS: Yeah exactly. And the same thing happens with couples who don’t have children. After a period of time, you have to reinvent what sexuality looks like and what intimacy looks like. I think it’s wonderful to have the child, because it forces you to do it and you’ve got this third person in the room.

MJ FISHER: When we got our baby we really got to know each other in a different level. Because we did talk about how we wanted to parent, but it got to a different once we had him, because now he was here. And of course once there is a newborn, you are not talking about how you are going to parent them like later on exactly, but definitely just talking and getting to know each other in a different sense and for my husband and I even just like just rubbing your hand on someone’s back, you know, just that physical connection trough out the day, you know, that gets you to think like, you know, you still have this husband here, you still have this relationship and you do need to keep that going and keep it growing along with, you know, having the baby. So it’s definetelly like little things and definetelly just talking and communicating is so huge and it doesn’t take a lot. It really can be just like, you know, small words or you could have hours of conversation if you have time. But yeah definitely it’s a whole new world.

ERIN ESTEVES: Well you know I tell my husband, I told him more frequently when the baby was just born, it’s like “Look, you are this kid’s dad, you will always be his dad. You don’t always have to be my husband.” And I know it sounds really harsh, but it’s the reality. We have to work at this. Because if we don’t choose to stay spouses to one another, then that disintegrates everything. So it’s a choice. You have to make that conscious effort, to try or why bother as far as I’m concerned.

DR. NICK KARRAS: It’s very true. And there is the energetic of that ‘children feel’ energy more so than anything. And when the parents are loving and they are bonding, they understand that… I grew up in a very large family. There were eight of us. I don’t know how my mother did it. And during the day my mother would, she’d slip into a depression. I could tell she had so much going on. And my dad would come home and he would grab her and lock lips with her. We knew that we were safe. That meant something to us, on a level we knew that we could become that is when we saw them together. And I think to give you self permission to be intimate with your partner is a gift to the children also.

MJ FISHER: Big time! The kids are watching from as soon as, and even before. Like my son would react to my husbands voice in the womb and it’s just huge to show your kids and they are watching, they are totally watching, I don’t care how old they are, but they feel it, they see it, they know.

ERIN ESTEVES: They mimic.

ALISA DILORENZO: I was just going to say is that the difference thing with that is that our kids are a little bit older. We’ve got the eleven and the eight years old and we choose to be affectionate in front of them and in front of their friends, you know. Somebody is over and it’s not unusual for Tony t o give me a kiss or us to give a hug and we didn’t realize how unusual that was until some of their friends would be over and they are like “What are your parents doing? And why are they doing this in front of us?” And we would at them and we saw that as a teaching point to say “You know, it’s okay for mammies and daddies to hug and kiss each other” And we realized then and we shared this with our audience too, that it’s a legacy that you are giving to your grandchildren and your great grandchildren, showing them that strong bond, showing them that you still desire each other and that this is the primary relationship in the family unit, because it’s exactly like you said – if mom and dad are strong and they are investing in that, that’s going to play out for the children. The children will always know where they fit inside that framework.

DR. NICK KARRAS: And there is not a lot of examples in media and public that show that. That is all a responsibility as a parent to give that gift.

XUCHI EGGLETON: Yeah, I was going to say that we do the same thing especially when, if there is any bit of tension going on. We make an extra effort to at least you know publicly and in a lot of ways it actually helps sort of smoothes things over. You know, when you are making this effort to be extra affectionate, you know, just so she can see us knowing that whatever little tiff or whatever just occurred or something that it’s still ok, you know. And then yeah, it actually makes things easier. It’s actually easier to get over any sort of argument now, then it was before the baby.

JOHNER RIEHL: But I guess here is the thing – this all we are having a conversation about this and so it’s awesome that we are all open-feeling, like talking about it. But even that question was framed anonymously and I thinks this isn’t really a conversation that it’s easy to have or that people will easily have, so it’s great for the listeners and it’s really cool for us to be in this room and to be able just to be open and hones about the intimacy. But how the people get to this point? Able to have the conversations, because it’s something just not talked about.

DR. NICK KARRAS: No, definetelly. They have to see the value in it. They have to make that decision, that’s something important. And I think that if we all think back to when we were little, there were times when we saw mom and dad embrace and it had an effect on us. It calmed us. It felt good. And just tell us that, remind ourselves of that.

JOHNER RIEHL: And so maybe grab a glass of wine or beer with your spouse and you, after the kids are asleep, you know, talk about it. Just, you know, connect in a level talking about it that’s listening to your partner. Would you say that’s good?

ERIN ESTEVES: I think there is a level of introspection and vulnerability that a lot of people aren’t comfortable with. For example my mom died when I was very young, so I never had that growing up where I can see my parents interact. I didn’t get that. So for me it was something that I had to ask myself – how do I make sure my son gets this. So I have to look at myself and then I have to talk to my husband about “You need to help be more physically open and affectionate, because I never learned that. And that’s what I’m saying. There is vulnerability and an intra-spectrum where some people… It’s tough. It’s tough.

DR. NICK KARRAS: Oh, definetelly. And then when the children grow up and go trough puberty it’s very complicated for them, because they don’t know what this erg and what this thing is going on and they don’t know how to tie it to intimacy and the desire for that and when the parents shows that, it just gives another tool for them to make you know transitioning into adult life a lot easier.

ERIN ESTEVES: There is a lot of nodding going on that side of the table.

TONY DILORENZO: My thing goes back to the questions. Because you asked “How do you ask?” What we find often is – couples don’t know what questions to ask. They get stuck. And so there are numerous books out there that folks can pick up on Amazon’s search on our site whatanextraordinarymarriage.com. We have seventy-seven questions to get the conversation started.


TONY DILORENZO: Because what we found is just giving folks the help to just look at a sheet of paper and go “Ok, this is the question we are going to ask and answer today.” And sometimes it might be five minutes; sometimes it might be twenty or thirty. I don’t know. It just depends on where you guys are at. But we’ve seen many couples do this and it’s helped them when they just take one question a day for seventy-seven days. And it starts allowing that free flow. We talk about all forms of intimacy one being sexual and that dives in deeper. So that was they can sit there and hopefully by the time they get to there, they are feeling more vulnerable, open and they are taking of those masks. And so they can really dig deep. Because that’s the biggest thing to be sexual intimate, especially after kids and if you are husband and you’ve been in the delivery room. There is a whole other thing. We even remember it more then they do like with the hormones. There are aspects of… There are images in my brain that… Epidural both times, so she was in la-la land, but I’m sitting there with a doctor, I’m thinking “Wow this is like… This is way different then I recognize it from when we are being intimate with each other!”

ERIN ESTEVES: Transformers.

TONY DILORENZO: Yeah, Transformers for guys. I mean there is a mental issue that even they and we have to overcome and realize.

ERIN ESTEVES: Well for example my husband and I talked about that, because I initially was like “Oh I want a mirror, I want to see everything this is fantastic!” And then people started putting things into my head and I was like “Oh, do I want him down south? I don’t know!” You know what if it’s going to mess things up about how views me after this. Do I really want him to see that? So we talked about it and he was like “There is no way you are keeping me away from down south!”

ALISA DILORENZO: Well, you husband, he is an artist. He is a visual person. Of course he is going to want to know exactly what it looks like.

ERIN ESTEVES: And it’s funny, because in the end I was like “No mirror! I don’t want to see anything!” And fortunately he says that it only confirmed or concreted his love for me, but for some people it’s not like that.

JOHNER RIEHL: Sure, everyone’s different. But it seems that a lot of the issues that we are talking about are coming from this projection of the spouse on to what they think the other person is going to think. Like wither from the woman thinking that “Oh he’s not going to want me! My body is not good enough!” or the husband thinking “Oh she is going to think I’m a horrible person if I say I want to have sexual relationship with her!”

MJ FISHER: That’s why communicating is so key.

ERIN ESTEVES: And then there are the assumptions.

MJ FISHER: Yeah and then once you star asking those questions and start communicating then you start feeling more comfortable. That’s the different level of the marriage after kids too that you can reach, you know. I think my husband and I after a certain point in time we really didn’t know like “What are your fantasies?” you know, we started asking things like that and, you know, you don’t have this conversation with just anybody, you know, this is just between him and I. So that was intimate too, because no one else will know this but him and I.

XUCHI EGGLETON: And us, if you tell us.

[Everybody laughs]

MJ FISHER: And the entire audience.

[Everybody laughs]

JOHNER RIEHL: Let’s take a quick break right here and when we get back, we’ll talk about what happens if communication doesn’t work on. I mean communication is key, but what if what you’re communication about doesn’t quite (inaudible) together. So we’ll be right back.

[Theme Music]

JOHNER RIEHL: Welcome back, everybody, to Parent Savers. Today we are talking about spicing up you marriage after kids with Dr. Nick Karras or the very least redefining intimacy in your marriage after kids could be a better way to put it. So what happens if the communication doesn’t really work? Like let’s say we talk in there is a big mismatching expectations or you know frequency that you like to have an intercourse for example.

DR. NICK KARRAS: I think the biggest problem most people do is they let it go. They push it down the road to the next day and to the next day and longer you go without it, the longer it’s harder to start it back up. And they are going to need help at some point. They are going to need to talk. Start talking with your friends. Start talking with other people. Be honest. Like you said earlier – the biggest thing is we don’t talk to one another about sexuality. We put on, especially men, we put on that “Yeah everything is fine, everything is fine, and everything is fine!” and then it’s not fine, you know. We are missing it.

TONY DELORENZO: Oh I agree a hundred percent and one the big things that Alisa and I have done for four years now is called “The Intimacy Lifestyle” where we have set up that we do have sex two times a week and the way we’ve set it up is that… Because one of the big things that we found in our marriage, especially after kids, was “my approach” and that it can be rejected. And this is big for men, because now you are being rejected time and time again which leads to “Not going to ask anymore!” So the duration now extends out to mounts and now you are really scared as a guy to even ask, because you are going to be rejected. So “The Intimacy Lifestyle” the way we’ve set it up is that there are three days a week that I initiate which are Wednesday, Thursday or Friday…

ALISA DI DILORENZO: That you have to ask, not initiate.

[Everybody laughs]

ALISA DILORENZO: Because there are some women right now that start like “I think I’m going to turn this thing of because if my husband hears this…”

[Everybody laughs]

TONY DILORENZO: I have the option to initiate on Wednesday, Thursday or Friday.

ERIN ESTEVES: Please! Option? Like he never doesn’t initiate?

ALISA DI DILORENZO: Well, let’s just say that he is going to pick one of those three days.


TONY DILORENZO: And as I’ve gone older too and with kids, I will say, as a guy, yeah, you get tired. There are definitely times when I’m just like man, between business and kids and doing everything else, I mean, yeah, there are definitely times that I would probably, at my stage at life that I would probably forget. So I do initiate. And then on Sunday, Monday, Tuesday Alisa has the option to initiate on one of those days. And that allows us to keep…

[Everybody talks]

ALISA DILORENZO: Saturday is a bonus day.

[Everybody talks]

ALISA DILORENZO: You know the thing we’re doing is that it does keep that spark there, because I don’t know like what day he’s going to initiate. Although if we get to Friday and he hasn’t chances are probably pretty good that it’s coming. But, you know, you just to the calendar and you’re “Ok we haven’t”. But the flipside of that is that we take turns initiating sex, because in our relationship, and I’m sure for a lot of listeners, initiating is traditionally one-sided, either the male or the female has the higher sex drive and so by us choosing to do it this way, and we talked about, it wasn’t just “Op let’s just do this!”, it allowed us to say “Ok, what do we want our sex life to look like?” and that’s one of those, you know, I’m sure, Dr. Nick, that’s one of those questions you need to ask. “What is it going to look like?”

DR. NICK KARRAS: Exactly, and I like your idea of the permission because I think the biggest thing is we feel, especially men, I felt terribly guilty, I mean I would look at my wife and she is tired and we have got this thing, this child that is taking all this time and I know I felt a burden financially in work and all the responsibilities. I felt wrong wanting to be sexual, I kind of felt guilty about that and allowing yourself to say that – okay we need that, we need to reconnect once in a while and do this and there is nothing the matter with having desire. Now let’s figure out how to make it happen.

ALISA DILORENZO: Absolutely and you know, we have listeners all around the world that have, you know, adapted that to fit their marriage. Because frequency, you know, might be, you only might change frequency, they may change, you know different variables in there but what they have decided is that having that sexual intimacy in their marriage matters to them.

JOHNER RIEHL: It is strange because on some level my reaction to that is – oh putting structure into your sex life just seems like it doesn’t fit, right, it is supposed to be the spontaneous thing but obviously that is a ridiculous notion and that is may be what parents need and may be so in my example I would need to get over that. Well it is not going to happen without structure, so …

[Everybody talks]

DR.NICK KARRAS: Anything that you value and you really want to have happen is going to take structure. If you want to, say, in future to buy a house or anything, you want to get education and you need to set time aside. To be a spiritual person you need to set time aside, you have to put a priority on it.

MJ FISHER: Yeah and when you have kids it is hard, I mean we tried to be spontaneous but it is hard. When my son started napping by himself we would run in the living room and you know, we don’t know how much time we are going to have. You know it was like, that was our spontaneity you know, but I really liked the stuff that you guys brought up because I, my husband I think he doesn’t like to initiate because he is afraid of the reaction but I’m actually wanting him to initiate. So we kind of have that back and forth now and then and he does see that I’m tired and there’s a nap but you know, I even said to him like I fell asleep on him last night and I said why didn’t you wake me up, you know, just wake me up. He was like – I tried but you were sleeping so soundly.

[Everybody laughs]

MJ FISHER: But you know, like just shake me, I don’t know, because I feel bad for him that I am falling asleep on him but I like that, your ideas, I think I’m going to have to use them.

ALISA DILORENZO: Well, please do. And one of the other things that we have heard from couples in our audience is that they will have the conversation especially moms of young children will say – okay if you let me know by 9 o’clock or by 10 o’clock that we will try to figure out what the new mommas thing up till 10 o’clock but …

[Everybody laughs]

ALISA DILORENZO: But we have had women that have told us – my husband will message me in the middle of the day, like, tonight is the night and she said to him anytime you let me know before 9 o’clock I will be ready. Because even if you get that text message during the day or that phone call that says – hey honey I’m thinking about it, you know that allows you, I think as a mom to mentally prepare to say – okay let me, like maybe we don’t need to do a bath night we will do a little washed cloth wiped down for the kids and that type of thing because my energy is going to go towards my husband. And so having that foresight to say – okay this is, this is what is on the calendar, and giving it, you know like you were talking the spontaneity question and I often tease people, I’m like – so how is that spontaneity?

TONY DILORENZO: Yeah exactly.

ALISA DILORENZO: I really have as much spontaneous sex as you would like.

XUCHI EGGLETON: That whole idea of why would you, it is over … I know it sounds really weird but it is like over-romanticizing something that is very necessary and almost practical.

TONY DILORENZO: Yeah, totally.

ALISA DILORENZO: Hollywood does lead us to believe that you walk into a room and throw back the bed and there are the rose petals and rose petals happen, I think probably twice in our marriage.

TONY DILORENZO: Bear skin rugs.

ALISA DILORENZO: Yeah, Tony has got this fantasy of a bear skin rug so there is one of the fantasies that come up, there you go. But in the real world there aren’t rose petals all the time and your hair isn’t always perfect.

ERIN ESTEVES: And sex on the beach is pretty …

[Everybody talks]

Yeah, there is just nothing else to say about that except it is not a good idea.

DR.NICK KARRAS: Yeah and I think a lot of times women also, most of the time when no means no it is no. If you are not in the mood and it is not going to work for you but if you are on the fence and you just soon fall asleep most of the studies have proven that the woman would say – no I just rather roll over but afterwards she will usually say – I’m glad I did. And so give yourself permission to even you know, if it is … go there sometimes even though you don’t want to because it is usually very rewarding.

JOHNER RIEHL: Well thanks so much for joining us Dr. Karras and thanks to everyone in the studio too, and thanks for listening. For more information about today’s topic or for more information about any of our panel lists visit the episode page on our website. This conversation will continue for members of our Parent Savers Club after the show. We will talk a little more about photo therapy, just what that is and what that means. For more information about the Parent Savers Club you can visit our website – parentsavers.com

[Theme Music]

JOHNER RIEHL: Before you wrap up today’s show here is blogger David Vienna sharing the realities of parenting from his blog – The Daddy Complex.

DAVID VIENNA: Hi Parent Savers, this is The Daddy Complex, I’m David Vienna – father of twin boys and if my experience has taught me anything about parenting it is that I know nothing about parenting. While we were potty-training our boys, my wife had to go on a business trip, she was gone for three nights and for each of those nights I had to handle poop. To my boy’s credits one of the nights it was dog poop. When you are expecting a baby, people would joke with or warn you about how messy babies and toddlers are.

No matter what you have heard or how detail those stories are, it does not provide an accurate picture of just how much human feces you will be forced to touch. Firstly, newborns poop is very fluid; this opens up a world of opportunities for fecal matter to find its way into places other than the diaper, especially if you experience what I dubbed – the poo fountain. By the way, if you see your newborn making his or her poop face, don’t rush over and change the diaper right away. We might not be done and your wall could end up looking like a Jackson Pollack painting. When a baby reaches toddlerhood, it gets more challenging. You will experience daily poop actions and doing potty-training and accidents don’t just manifest as dirty undies.

Poop will appear in hallways, in our furniture and slit from pant legs, the most opportune time, not that there is really an opportune time for (inaudible) from a pant leg. Even after your child is technically potty-trained, you are not done. Once our boys knew how and when to use the potty, they still hadn’t mastered the post-poop clean up. I knew this was an issue but really discovered how much of an issue, one night when my son Boone climbed up on my lap and showed a long brown smear on his leg. The worst part however, it wasn’t his smear. Let me preface that like me, my boys like to watch TV in the nude. It seems to Wyatt left midshow and deposited a monstrous bowel movement in the potty.

He had trouble hitting the toilet paper off the roll so he just gave a perfunctory wipe with a shred of tissue and returned to the couch to cuddle with his nude brother. They both ended up with so many smears with poop on them, they looked like they were members of the world’s smelliest Indian tribe and yes, and the couch suffered some collateral damage. If I haven’t made it clear, let me reiterate. You will handle a soul-crippling amount of poop, there is no way around it, so invest in some gloves if you think it might help, it won’t. And work on controlling your gag reflex, you can’t, often when I was cleaning up a pile I actually had to go to my happy place; I call it the Island of purel. Check out more of my terrible advices on thedaddycomplex.com, the happy net post and on twitter at The Daddy Complex.

You can also view episodes of Fighting with babies, my public web series for parents, at www.thedaddycomplex.com/fwb and be sure to keep listening to Parent Savers for more fatherly tips.

JOHNER RIEHL: That wraps up today’s episode of Parent Savers. We appreciate you listening; don’t forget to check our sister’s shows – Preggie pals for expecting parents, The boob group for moms who breastfeed their babies and Twin talks for parents of multiples. Next week we will be talking about another great topic of interest to parents of newborns to kindergarteners everywhere. Thanks for joining us. This is Parent Savers – empowering new parents.

This has been a New Mommy Media production. Information and material contained in this episode are presented for educational purposes only. Statements and opinions expressed in this episode are not necessarily those of New Mommy Media and should not be considered facts. Though information in which areas are related to be accurate, it is not intended to replace or substitute for professional, Medical or advisor care and should not be used for diagnosing or treating health care problem or disease or prescribing any medications. If you have questions or concerns regarding your physical or mental health or the health of your baby, please seek assistance from a qualified health care provider.


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