The early weeks of pregnancy are fragile—and confusing. Here, the answers to your questions.
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"When I was pregnant, my husband was so afraid of dislodging the baby that we went my entire pregnancy without sex. Now, because I'm breastfeeding, he still feels like he's sharing me with the baby. I don't want to go another year without sex!"
Expert Advice: Carve out time for you and your husband to be together without the baby, even if it's just for one hour a week. "This can help re-establish your connection and make him feel like a partner rather than just a parent," says Levine.
Ease into physical contact by having a make-out session or a massage. Let him know your desires, and in the meantime get a good vibrator to satisfy yourself, advises Levine."While it's a different experience than partnered sex, it's pleasurable and, best of all, asure thing."
If he's still not interested in sex, consider couples therapy, or have him see a therapist on his own.To find a certified sex therapist, contact the American Association of Sexuality Educators, Counselors and Therapists at aasect.org.
"I'm terrified of having a second."
"I'm pregnant with my second child and worry that I won't love this baby as much as my first."
Expert Advice: "The love for a child is so overwhelming and so unlike any other relationship a woman has that she often can't imagine feeling that same kind of intensity again," says cognitive behavioral therapist Marsha Candela, M.S.W., clinical manager of behavioral health at the Henry Ford Health System in Detroit. But it will happen--really! The bond with your second baby may be different, but within a family, Candela notes, differences are a good thing.
"I'm afraid I might love our second child more than our first. Our son has a temper, and I worry that I'll compare this tantrumming toddler to our cuddly baby and prefer the baby."
"When we think of the idyllic moments spent with a sweet, delicate newborn, most of us would choose that over battling wills with a 2-year-old," says Candela. But toddlers also laugh and hug and make funny comments. Caring for your sweet but needy infant may actually make you appreciate your toddler more, especially at 2 a.m., when you have to drag yourself out of bed to feed your baby while your toddler is, thankfully, sound asleep.
"I hate breastfeeding."
"Instead of making me feel bonded to my daughter, I feel like she's a leech sucking the life out of me. I feel there is something very wrong with me because the whole act disgusts me. Every day I pray that she will reject breastfeeding."
Expert Advice: If breastfeeding just isn't for you, pumping is a great option if you'd like to provide breast milk for your baby, says Melissa Kotlen Nagin, a certified lactation consultant in New York City, who writes breastfeeding.about.com. "Breast milk will still provide the same power coming from a bottle." A bottle is much healthier for your baby than a daily dose of resentment from you.
"Also pump and store a bank of milk in your freezer so your husband can feed the baby and give you a well-deserved break," Nagin suggests. If you get into the routine of pumping in the morning, when your milk supply is most plentiful, you won't feel so tied down.