Sex and Pregnancy: The Second Trimester
Some women experience sex as the most enjoyable during the second trimester. For one reason, most of your earlier pregnancy symptoms (nausea, exhaustion, etc) may have subsided by now, and in turn you are feeling more energized and able to return to regular activities: eating, exercising, and sex. Your belly should be rounding out by now and growing, as well as your breasts. These physical changes along with the pregnancy “glow” can you feel in your prime; it’s more clear to the world now that you are pregnant, and you can now flaunt your new assets. While your emotions may fluctuate, your sexual desire may do so as well. Pregnancy is often about the extremes, and nothing in between. For example, if you’re hungry you’re not just hungry, you’re starving; If you’re tired, you’re not just tired you are absolutely exhausted, and don’t want to move even a limb. If you’re in the mood for sex, most likely you’re ready to just jump on top of your partner. So when the mood strikes you the best thing you can do is take the opportunity when it’s there and encourage your partner to go with it. These are one of those great silver linings when it comes to the radical changes in pregnancy. As positive these changes are, they are still changes. You may be excited to find that you are more lubricated, and more orgasmic during the second trimester, but such changes can also challenge your self-perception as you get closer to motherhood, and the idea of balancing your newer sexual self and your eventual parenting role may be a struggle. You most likely don’t know your body the way you did just a few months ago, she keeps changing on you daily. This is your opportunity to explore your body and explore the changes that are happening to learn what works for the pregnant, sexual you. The more you learn about the changes that are happening for you physically, the more information you have to decide how you want to approach sex during the second trimester, as we all the third (link to third tri tip here).
Engorgement: A Good thing or Bad thing?
The second trimester is when you will be experiencing a good amount of engorgement: engorged nipples and engorged genitals. This can do one of two things: Increase stimulation and make orgasms even more intense and enjoyable, or cause discomfort. There’s nothing that can be done to decrease the discomfort other than sexual activity (masturbation, digital stimulation, intercourse, etc). If that doesn’t work or perhaps sex is the last thing on your mind, simply be mindful that the engorgement and increased blood flow is a symptom of pregnancy. It is just another sign that your body is working overtime to get your baby out of you and into your arms.
There are a plethora of reasons to make sex happen as often as you can during your second trimester: You are more sensual and sensitive to touch, meaning better orgasms. You have a more voluptuous body to explore and play with (and for your partner to play with), but you’re belly is still on the smaller side and not too much of a distraction or interference, allowing you to continue most of your favorite positions, or variations of them. Plus, your belly is not too much of a distraction just yet. Sex is a great stress reducer, which as a pregnant woman, you need all of the stress reduction possible.
A few things to consider beforehand, avoid putting too much pressure on your stomach, for example with the man on top/missionary position, make sure your partner leans back and away from the belly as much as possible. Also, doctors encourage pregnant woman to avoid laying directly on their back for long periods of time. Positions where you are on top or on your side will be accommodate your physical limitations, give you the ability to control the rhythm, pace, and depth of penetration, and provide direct clitoral contact. These are the three ingredients to give you optimal sexual pleasure. Here are a few examples of ideal sexual positions for you and your partner in your second trimester.
Woman on top:
You can sit or kneel on top of your partner, either face to face with your partner, or try these positions facing away from your partner (your partner is lying down belly up, while you’re on top). Using your partners thighs to lean back on will help give you the support to stay up and balanced, and avoid putting too much weight on your belly. As mentioned earlier woman on top positions give you the most control over everything during intercourse, which can help you achieve the most sexual pleasure.
Sitting (a slight variation of woman on top):
Have your partner sit on the bed (at this stage in pregnancy probably the most comfortable place for you), sit inside of your partner’s lap, in between his legs, facing him, allowing him to easily enter you. This position allows for complete intimacy with eye contact and full body contact.
This popular form of affection is also a great sexual position during pregnancy. While you are laying on your side in a slightly curled position with your back to your partner, your partner lays also on his side, allowing him the ability to enter you from behind. Lifting your top leg just a bit will allow easier access for entry and penetration. This is a great position for taking pressure and focus off of the belly, also giving your partner the opportunity to take the lead. This position gives your partner access and options to cupping your breasts, caressing your belling, or even giving you addition stimulation by massaging your clitoris, or stroking your inner thighs, whichever feels best to you.
If you need a break from the bedroom routine, this is where standing may be a refreshing position. This is very similar to the spooning position, except the two of you are standing instead of laying on your sides. Both of you are standing upright, while your partner enters you from behind (lifting one of your legs to the side will allow for an easier entry for your partner. Just like in the spooning position, your partner can play and massage your breasts, kiss your neck, etc. Keep in mind if you continue this position into your pregnancy, be sure to be near something that you can use for stability (a chair, edge of bed, etc) in case you lost your balance a bit. As your belly continues to grow, you can become a little clumsy, or struggle with balance at times.
Explore and play around with the positions. Pregnancy brings many surprises when it comes to your body and physical reactions. What you want and what pleases you sexually will change at times and figuring out new positions and new ways to be aroused can be a fun adventure. Remind yourself and your partner that the two of you are on an adventure right now as you wait for your big arrival, sex during your second trimester is just another fun and rewarding adventure.