Coitus non existus

How often do you have sex? Once a week? Once a month? Never?!

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Psychologists in the US estimate that 15-20% of couples with small children have sex no more than 10 times a year. If even that sounds like a lot, perhaps you should be thinking about how to put the zing back into your love life.

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Never in the mood? That’s perfectly normal for a new mum, say the authors of a new book Babyproofing your marriage.

They explain, ‘Our biological drive tells us NOT to reproduce when we are caring for our young. A woman’s overwhelming urge is not for sex but to protect and satisfy the needs of her babies.’

Or, put simply: you’re too tired. When you’re in charge of children, you are on the move all day: organising, carrying, pushing, worrying, clearing up, cleaning, entertaining. It’s a far more demanding schedule than most paid jobs.

Then there are the other stresses that parenthood puts on your partnership. The Babyproofing team warns you to look out for:

Scorekeeping: an exceedingly complex, often relentless, tit-for-tat war waged by partners over the division of parenting responsibilities and domestic chores.

The 10pm Shoulder Tap: considered by many men to be a form of foreplay. A paw on a partner’s shoulder is how some men indicate their desire for sex. Rarely accompanied by any other verbal form of communication.

Clash of the Grannies: A high stakes ‘who will have the greatest influence on the grandchildren’ tournament. Competitive categories include: the Title Championship (eg who gets to be called Grandma?) and Gratuitous Grandparental Gift-Giving.

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Babyproofing your marriage, by Stacie Cockrell, Cathy O’Neill and Julia Stone is published by Collins, £10.99

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