• Wed, Jan 9 2013

Sex In The Delivery Room: It Happens

shutterstock_19369018

“Ok, goodbye! We’ll be seeing you soon!” I said cheerfully to the patient and her boyfriend, gathering up her discharge paperwork as I waved them out the door of our labor and delivery floor.

Behind me, I heard stifled giggles from my co-workers.

“What is it? What’s so funny?” I demanded.

“We didn’t have time to tell you, but that was the couple,” one of them managed in between laughs.

The couple?” I asked. “Oh,” I said, realization dawning on me. “That couple.”

That couple.

The one who got caught having sex in the triage room. Behind a curtain. With two other patients in plain view.

As a labor and delivery nurse, I am used to well, intimate moments with my patients. But sometimes, things can get a little too intimate for my liking. Through the years, my co-workers and I have witnessed a few X-rated scenes on the OB floor, including the delivery room.

Throughout my tenure, I’ve noticed that labor and delivery brings out a lot of things in people. And one of them, apparently, is sex.

The couple in question was there for a labor evaluation. She had experienced a few contractions and thought she may be in labor, but after being evaluated, her doctor decided to send her home. Her nurse unhooked her from the monitors and walked out to gather her discharge paperwork—a task that takes 15 minutes, tops.

But that was all the time they needed.

The two other women in the triage room and their husbands, separated by a few thin curtains, watched as the couple formulated a plan. Deciding the hospital bed wasn’t conducive to any other position, the couple settled on doggy-style. While they may have thought the curtains provided them with enough cover, they had overlooked the fact that their bed sat directly next to a window. With a reflection clearly visible to the entire triage room.

When their nurse came back, she was quickly waved over by one of the other patients in the room and updated on the situation. So unbelievable was the scene they had just witnessed that one of the husbands had even snapped a picture of the window reflection with his cell phone, leaving no shadow of a doubt.

Now I know having sex is supposed to induce labor and all, but I call that taking things a bit too far.

Call me old-fashioned but I just don’t see the appeal. There’s just something about giving birth and getting intimate in a hospital environment that doesn’t sit well with me. But that doesn’t seem to stop some people.

One nurse I know caught her patient with a man in her bed during her labor—and he wasn’t the father of the baby she was delivering.

While talking with my patient about the plan to have her get up to the shower, her boyfriend asked if he could help her. “Oh, of course,” I said gratefully. “That would be great.”

“See?” he said, shoving her playfully and waggling his eyebrows. “I told you they wouldn’t care if we got in the shower together!”

His girlfriend rolled her eyes at him. “She didn’t mean like that,” she said.

No, I certainly didn’t mean like that. And did I mention she had given birth about 30 minutes prior?

For another patient, no permission was necessary—one of my fellow nurses had the pleasure of walking in on a patient in the shower with her man.

Or there was the patient who called up to the labor and delivery floor, curious as to how long she should wait to have anal sex after her c-section. Was three days too early?

All jokes aside, there was once even a case of a woman giving birth, only to be sent right back to surgery after her husband exercised his spousal rights—and tore her stitches completely open.

And then there was the patient I had recently whose labor had stalled. After being stuck at two cm dilated for most the afternoon, her boyfriend helpfully suggested they have sex to try to get things going.

“Oh, yeah!” she said brightly. “That’s a good idea! The prostaglandins are supposed to help dilate me!” They then proceeded to discreetly ask for privacy.

The moral of the story here? Please don’t have sex while you’re in the hospital, waiting to have a baby, or having just delivered a baby. You never know who may walk in on you. Or have a cell phone.

(photo: Mirko Tabasevic / Shutterstock)

Share This Post:
  • msenesac

    Ugh. This is so unbelievably tacky and gross. I can’t believe you have to deal with this… and those poor other parents having to sit there in the same room while that couple went at it. When I was in the hospital getting ready to deliver, sex was the VERY last thing on my mind.

  • whiteroses

    My husband tried to touch my shoulder in the middle of labor. I nearly took his hand off.
    I cannot even BEGIN to imagine what my reaction would have been if he’d suggested we have sex in the delivery room. I imagine that I’d be divorced now.

    • StephKay

      Divorced? I’d be widowed if my partner suggested sex in the mat ward.

  • meteor_echo

    Give that pelvic floor some rest, folks D:
    So tacky.

  • Vivi’s Mom

    I had a c-section with my daughter and when I was told I could take one, all I wanted was a shower… I paged the nurse and after what seemed like an eternity no one came so my husband helped me to the bathroom and when I was done out of the shower… Enter the nurse, she glared at us and said, “we don’t allow that sort of behavior in the hospital”… lol I was confused and said we weren’t doing anything I needed help getting out of the shower and she told me that I would be surprised how many couples she’s walked in on getting busy in the shower… Yuck… So tacky… No thank you…

  • http://expandng.com/ lisacng @ expandng.com

    Sure, sex can induce labor, but do it in the privacy of your own homes! And one husband tore open his wife’s stitches. Ew!

  • LiteBrite

    Yeah, I can tell you right now we were not THAT couple. About the last thing I was thinking of while strapped down and drugged up waiting for my C-section was “Gee, I so want to have sex with this man.”

  • Daisy

    Call me crazy, but I don’t see the problem with showering together. Doing it where staff or other patients can see you is gross, but in the privacy of a locked bathroom in your own hospital room? Sure, why not? I wouldn’t do it myself, but I kind of think of it like staying in a hotel. You wouldn’t get it on in the hot tub or the parking lot, but if you want to take it up to your own room, that’s your own business.

    • Andrea

      No, it kinda actually isn’t. Unlike a hotel room where you are ensured privacy, a hospital room (and its bathroom) is accessible by ALL medical personnel AT ALL TIMES. It has to be! A hospital is not a hotel.

    • lea

      Where several of my friends have delivered, the private bathroom in their room has a lock. Sure, there is probably a way of staff getting in there for emergencies, but not by accident.

    • whiteroses

      Yeah, this. I’m sorry, hospital sex is just gross. This ain’t “Grey’s Anatomy”, people.

    • Lori B.

      First, I cannot imagine having sex while still in the hospital for delivering a baby. I was terrified to sit on the toilet, let alone partake in such a voluntary activity.

      However, I wouldn’t write off hospital sex entirely. When I was a senior in high school, my boyfriend at the time had Cancer and had to go to the hospital for week long stays regularly for chemotherapy. On one or two occassions when his parents were not there we “privately” used the bathroom. Maybe it was the adolescent hormones, but it was kind of exciting at the time. We really had nothing better to do:/ I was helping to keep his spirits up:)

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1165875627 Jennifer Ives O’Meara

    Just wow, I know that it happens, but seriously, right after birth? What the actual F*#k? My sex drive sits in park my entire pregnancy, and I don’t know why so that would never be an issue for me. Scientist need to find the source of that drive, bottle it up and sell us ladies a little blue pill.

  • ccs

    what about the lady who did it right after giving birth?! the amount of blood you leak! ew! all I wanted was a shower 3x a day and ice!

    • katydid0605

      agreed! I had no pain, tears, etc after my three..and STILL wouldnt have wanted him anywhere near there right after! Ew! and the cramping from your uterus shrinknig back down. I have a freind who’s sister is a midwife, and he has told be about her and her staff needing to keep some fathers away from there wives after delivery because they would dive right in there

  • Andrea

    Sex during labor: some people have no class at all. Trashy and uncouth doesn’t even begin to describe it.
    Sex after delivery: are you freaking kidding me???? You can get SERIOUSLY hurt, you could get an infection, and on top of everything else, don’t you have enough going on woman??? WTF is WRONG with these people!!!!

  • CrazyFor Kate

    A woman claimed on her blog (at a home birth) to have delivered one twin, had sex with her husband while the second twin was still in there and the cord was still hanging out, and then deliver the second about 48 hours later. Just…how…does that…

    • Koa Beck

      You need to share this link with me. Please.

    • CrazyFor Kate
    • CrazyFor Kate

      Oh, and MAJOR NSFW warning.

    • Justme

      Thank goodness I am at work because if I were at home I would have clicked on the link and I have the distinct feeling this is a “I can’t unsee this” type of story.

  • Kate

    Yeah… I was too busy resenting the s*** out of my husband for dozing while I had contractions all night. If he had even HINTED at getting busy I think the courts would have a justifiable homicide on their hands.

  • Jenna

    When I left the hospital after my first birth and severe severe tearing my doctor looked me in the eyes and very seriously said “And NO. having. sex. until I see you again and give you the ok.”

    I looked at him in horror and asked “Do you remember the disaster zone you just had to reassemble?!?! Why on earth would you think you even needed to tell me that?!?!”

    He shook his head. “I’m surprised the things I have to tell people sometimes.”

    • Andrea

      LOL @disaster zone!! I honestly felt like I would never ever ever could conceive having anything go anywhere near my vagina after my 1st baby. Ha ha ha ha ha

      Plus I was so exhausted and my body felt like it had been ran over by truck for months. I seriously considered lying to my husband after my 6 week check up and telling him the doctor said I needed some more time. I didn’t. But I talked to him about it…he was very understanding. But he took some loooong showers during that time. *snort*

  • Victoria

    It’s just exhibitionism, it excites them knowing people can see/hear/might walk in on them. But L&D sex…oh my word. I can’t even.

  • bumbler

    I read an article about a woman who was in an abusive relationship with her husband, and he forced her to have sex with him right after she gave birth, and it tore her stitches. Surely that isn’t the case with ALL these people, but perhaps for a few of these women, they were being manipulated or forced. Also, some people who are victims of past sexual abuse (men or women) can have trouble knowing when and where it’s appropriate to have sex. That might sound absurd but as a foster parent I deal with it all the time. Kids who think it’s totally legit to masturbate in line at the grocery store etc. Eventually these kids will grow into adults and I could see them doing this kind of thing.

    • Andrea

      I considered that when I read the article. I could seriously see a situation where it was the man pressuring for sex. Pretty reprehensible..but I can see it. Bestids.

    • StephKay

      I’m a survivor and I can totally attest to not fully understanding appropriate times and places for sex in my teens. Less so grocery lines and more playground at lunch time or couch in the middle of a party with any guy thar appeared even remotely nice to me. Not to mention pregnancy and childbirth can often trigger an abuser. They see another being’s involvement with their property’s body as a great offense and need to re-establish ownership over her body. This is why there’s such a high murder rate for pregnant women and new mothers, the abusers are extremely likely to be triggered at such dramatic moments. Besides, I had stitches after delivery, and when I started having sex again weeks later it was agonizing. It took many, many, many tries and brought tears to my eyes. The idea of a woman tearing her stitches so soon after delivery, well, I can honestly say it’s making me cringe just as much because I’m a mom who tore as it is because I survived a violent rape. That’s exactly what my mind went to when I read that too. Now of course everyone heals differently, has a different pain tolerance and sex drive, but I would be extremely careful to not overlook abuse in some of the cases listed here.

    • bumbler

      Yes, this exactly, thank you for your insight. My foster kids are quite young and perhaps a bit mentally disturbed, hence the grocery line incident, which I would not say is typical, I should have mentioned the playground/couches at parties as you did. Also, thank you for adding the reality of the abuser “reclaiming” the victim around the time of birth, that’s also a key reality here.

    • StephKay

      I know I’m replying days late here, but I just want to thank you from the bottom of my heart. As a survivor, a child and youth worker and a mother I am so so grateful for people like you that take in the most vulnerable. I was a system kid too, and I am still so close to my primary foster parents that we just moved in two doors down from them, my family spends all holiday and birthday dinners with them, and when Im in labor this April my daughter will be staying with them. The exact same can be said for their other foster daughter. As someone who so so badly required the help of attentive foster parents, and as someone who did manage to work through the trauma over time, I can’t stress to you enough just how important you are in the lives of these kids. You’re a rock star :)

  • L&D nurse

    I am also a L&D nurse, we had a couple once on our unit whose water had broken, and was trying to “naturally” stimulate labor contractions, she had taken castor oil at home and was having explosive stools all over the birthing room when she came in, but wasn’t making any cervical change, so her and her husband decided to have sex in the birthing room to try and move things along. Needless to say she ended up with a pretty wretched infection…

    • marlee727

      noooooooooo! no no no no no.

    • whiteroses

      I…um…what the actual f*ck. They lost me at “explosive stools”. I have no idea how her husband was able to have sex with her after that one.
      Also, I hope your janitor was given a Floridian vacation or paid many millions of dollars.

    • L&D nurse

      I felt SO bad for the cleaning staff, we actually ended up moving her to a new room half way through her labor because it was such a disater zone…and the husband had the nerve to be resentful about the move…..like we were insulting them. People. Are. CRAZY.

  • Makabit

    “Or there was the patient who called up to the labor and delivery floor, curious as to how long she should wait to have anal sex after her c-section. Was three days too early?”

    Given that she might well have gone home the day before, I don’t see the hilarity in this one. She wanted to know how long she had to wait to have sex? That’s a question the L&D nurse may be able to answer for her.

  • Danielle

    After having my baby I didn’t even want to pee it hurt so bad. I couldn’t even imagine having sex.

  • grossjames

    Call me crazy, but I can’t help but wonder if these women are sexually abused by their husbands. I couldn’t sit for three weeks after giving birth! Granted, I had an unusually rough delivery, but still. Sex 30 minutes after giving birth???????? Who would willingly agree to that?????

  • MaeganB

    …When I was seeing a group of midwives and labor stalled for some patients…they would actually say something like, “Well, you’re stalled, so I’m going to go grab a quick meal down the road at the [fast food restaurant]…I’ll be gone, as will ALL OF OUR STAFF for about 45 minutes or so. If you guys get bored, just entertain yourselves until we come back.” …It was “the code” for ‘please get busy so this baby will come out already’. But it was a birth center, so the rooms were private (there were 2 rooms, but rarely in use at the same time and they were not directly connected so it was private anyway)…looked like a typical bedroom…and you could lock your door from the inside so no one could come in by accident. It didn’t really seem that weird to me. The sex at least would stimulate contractions to start back up.

  • sdj

    I am only comfortable giving birth in the same place I’m comfortable having sex…and that is not in the hospital…

  • Commentary

    Labor is strenuous, and tiring. And I recall that the shower had an impeccable and phenomenal feeling during labor. It reduced and almost eliminated the feeling of contractions, and you can guarantee my husband was right behind me in the shower encouraging me through each contraction. Were we engaging in intercourse? Absolutely not! We were in bathing suits, but if I am in labor and I want to take a shower and have my husband’s assistance and strength beside me, as long as there are no preceding medical conditions arising at the time, I would not seek the approval of a nurse, and could care less if she gave me “permission” or not. But I do concur, that sexual practices at the hospital are not appropriate, and should be encountered somewhere else, feasibly in the privacy of ones own residence.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Maggi-Smith-Davis/100002356484255 Maggi Smith-Davis

    If a couple want to have sex to help move things along you should mind your own business… they are paying about 3k a day just to be there, after all, and there’s nothing wrong with feeling sexy even when in labor and for fu*ck’s sake, they may as well canoodle to help with dilation can’t do anything for 6 weeks after. Just because you are a prude doesn’t mean you need to judge other people for enjoying their lives where you may see them doing it. If they ask for privacy, leave the room.

  • http://www.facebook.com/sharon.j.merrill Sharon Jeanette Merrill

    Hello? Is anyone even thinking about the baby’s head here? Couldn’t this be dangerous for the baby?

    • Jack White

      no if its anal

  • MelD

    I have had 3 csections, never any vajayjay births but i have experienced labor all 3 times. Never even one time did sex cross my mind, nor my husbands. If he would of even suggested something even close to the preposterous things mentioned, i would of probably had an accelerated delivery due to laughing so hard. Plus does anyone of these couples realize a hospitol needs to be a sterile environment? I feel for the staff that had to witness these things. I’m far froma prude but a hospitol isn’t the place for romantic encounters people

  • Pingback: Sex After Birth, Sex Study, Postpartum Sex, Sex after baby,

  • Pingback: The 5 Types Part-Time Working Mom Guilt - Mommyish

  • Angry Racist Jewish Hambone

    How did I get here…

  • Papilio

    Lesson… don’t attempt orgasmic birth in a hospital. ;)