Well, most of the sex actually happens everywhere except the bed, but it’s totally possible to have an active sex life while co-sleeping with your kids. Take it from me. We shared a family bed for nearly nine years and recently transitioned to co-sleeping on weekends only. Neither my marriage nor sex life have suffered one bit from it.

To be honest, my husband and I never intended to co-sleep. During my first pregnancy, we prepared a nursery for our baby, crib and all. We even put the baby in his crib on his first night home from the hospital. We turned on the baby monitor and went to bed to get some much needed rest. But I couldn’t sleep. I couldn’t hear the baby breathing through the monitor. What if he stopped breathing in his sleep and I didn’t find out until hours later? We decided to bring him into our bed–temporarily–until he was a little bigger. One thing led to another, and we never used the crib again. He ended up sleeping with us for nine years! When his brother came along three years later, we managed to squeeze him in too.

How did my husband and I achieve intimacy in a family bed? First, I think it was very important that both of us were on board with the idea of co-sleeping. My husband and I enjoyed having the boys in our bed, and it never felt like a burden. This is important because neither adult should resent anybody for having to share a bed with their children. Second, we weren’t modest with each other. We didn’t let any tendencies toward prudish behavior hold back our physical attraction to one another. But then again, we never had. All spaces in our home were fair game for sex, and that didn’t change when we had kids. Of course, as they got older we had to get more creative about when and where we did the deed, but that only added thrill to the situation.

If you are willing to have sex outside of your bedroom and at unconventional times of the day, then it is possible to co-sleep and still preserve your intimacy. Think nap times and early mornings. Consider sneaking into the bathroom or laundry room for a quickie when the kids are busy playing. Any room with a lock works. And if you’re afraid they will hear you, you can always turn on the radio or TV to help muffle the sound. Finally, don’t forget to go on dates with each other. It’s always nice to have some kid-free time for uninterrupted conversations, and you can squeeze in some unbridled, do-whatever-you-want, scream-your-heart-out sex. My husband and I don’t go on dates a whole lot, but now that both kids are in school we do take days off work to spend time with each other. It feels like a mini vacation in the middle of the week.

Your kids will not want to sleep with you forever. My older son, who is nine, recently decided he wants to start sleeping in his bedroom, and little brother chose to go with him. After trying it out for a few weeks, they decided that they still wanted to sleep with us from time to time, so we settled on weekends. They get to sleep in our bed on Fridays and Saturdays if they want to. I suspect they will soon wean themselves from the weekends too. Until then, my husband and I will continue to enjoy some cuddle time with our kids.

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