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I could use my therapist today



I am not in a happy place right now. You would think that at 11 weeks pregnant I would be blissing out and eagerly planning for the new life that will join us in 6 months. You would think I would be relishing the time with my husband and enjoying the fact that I’m finally, after more than 10 weeks, no longer on pelvic rest. You would think that I would be in awe and wonder of the changes occurring with my body. But I’m not.

I’m dreading next weeks’ OB appointments and fearing the NT scan. I was inspecting our 10 week ultrasound images and I think I see too much fluid around the Chicken’s neck. It would be just my luck, you know? Whatever pregnancy zen I had cooking on Tuesday is gone and in its place is a very real fear of what we might learn. Last night I was plagued by nightmares of birthing a still-born child with terrible deformities. This returning fear has left me terrified of telling more people about the pregnancy, even though it is becoming increasingly hard to hide (hello boobs).

I have been on pelvic rest for nearly 11 weeks now. On Tuesday Dr. B finally said we could have sex again and my husband looked overjoyed. I, however, can’t stomach the thought of it. I realize that this is going to sound horrible so please don’t judge – my husband smells.  To be fair, everyone smells. I can smell the security guard  I can smell EVERYONE who squishes in the elevator with me. I can smell the homeless guy across the street. But I don’t have to have relations with everyone. You know?

My husband wears this lotion that has some manly fragrance to it that smells an a lot like a hamster after a vigorous workout on an exercise wheel. I have had to roll the car windows down on numerous occasions to try to escape the smell. I tell him I just need fresh air, but really, I’m trying to escape his scent. I feel like a TERRIBLE person for this. I don’t know how I’m supposed to have sex with him and not offend horribly when before coitus I hand him a bar of soap, a clean towel and instruct him to bathe first and NOT use any lotion.  What a bitch, right?

Any tips on how to avoid smelling your husband during sex? Any ideas on how to feel sexy when your body is FAR from sexy? I’m swollen, bloated, and breaking out and my lady parts bestow gross “vagina sneezes” of super narsty mucus several times a day. Shaving is a challenge because my skin has become incredibly sensitive to razor burn even with the ridiculous 5 blade razors and “sensitive” shaving lotion/cream.  Putting on lingerie is not an option since none of it fits without me looking sort of like the below photo (exaggeration but you get the point). Actually, my hair is in this awkward growing out stage and sort of looks like this when I bounce around. Delightful, right?

I thought pregnant women were supposed to glow? Where the hell is my glow?



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  1. Amber #
    December 7, 2012

    I know it is hard, but try not to fret over the NT scan. All four of ours showed some fluid and one was worse than the others. By the next week all were resolved and I have no idea which one was the worst. All babies hearts are healthy!
    As for the smells, that does’t get better….I lurched a lot due to smells. Maybe take a nice shower together before getting close?
    It is so ironic how us infertiles yearn for pregnancy only to find out it is horrible! The good news is these days are short lived and you will love that little chicken forever.

    • December 7, 2012

      While I’m sorry you had the scare of a fluidy NT scan FOUR times, I’m relieved to know it was nothing. And it is ironic! Last night, while feeling miserable and trying to sooth my cat who was working up a hairball, I wondered – “Had I known how not glamorous pregnancy would be would I have skipped IVF and gone straight to adopting?” The answer is def. no, but still, I think had I known what a challenge it would be once I “arrived” I might have been in a little less hurry and enjoyed certain things (sex with a non stinky husband) a lot more!

  2. Lee #
    December 7, 2012

    The glow hits second trimester; first trimester is more about the weird smells, bloating, and nervousness at every internal twitch. But the good news is you get to pull the pregnancy card anytime you want – which means you can be honest with the Prof about his lotion, which I am sure will smell sexy again to you in a few short weeks. And you get to do anything you want, which can mean no sex and sitting on the couch in sweats eating anything that does smell good to you. This all falls under taking care of yourself, which is the same thing as taking care of the Chicken.

    I wish I had easy advice about the upcoming scan, but I know how scary the waiting can be. Just keep breathing and take care of yourself today.

    • December 7, 2012

      Sweats and the couch sounds delightful right now! Only a few more weeks till the 2nd Trimester for me… I’m eagerly awaiting my “glow.” 🙂

  3. December 7, 2012

    I would throw up when my husband would leave the bathroom…after a shower. The smell of his Nivea soap would induce vomiting, and then I had to walk into the Nivea cloud to throw up in the toilet. No good advice here for sex. But having strong peppermint gum helped me through the smells. Good Luck!

  4. December 7, 2012

    **Hugs** Belle. Hang in there.

    I spent months thinking our baby had no chin, but it turns out that there is a reason they elect to perform certain tests at certain times and it’s because the fetus changes so rapidly. Please don’t worry about your 10 week u/s photo. You have every reason to believe that this little babe will be just fine at your NT scan.

    As for smells…can you just ask your husband to back off the lotion in general for a while? Or replace it with something unscented? Also – don’t feel back about not being in the mood for sex. This is totally normal.

  5. jak #
    December 7, 2012

    i will be blunt – you cannot get NT info from a 10wk scan. it does not show up until after 11 wks, and shows up best at 12 wks, ending at 13.6 wks. so no., there is no reason to freak out now:)

    • December 7, 2012

      Thank you. I need blunt. I very nearly made myself ill this morning staring at the ultrasound.

      • jak #
        December 7, 2012


  6. December 7, 2012

    Try not to worry about the fluid. One of my triplets had a very severe cystic hygroma around 13 weeks and by 17 weeks it had completely resolved. An amniocentesis confirmed our baby boy was healthy. He did have a club foot, but that can be resolved fairly easily from what I remember. We just see so much more because of all this extra monitoring it can make you way over analyze everything!

  7. Kenya's mom #
    December 7, 2012

    Collect lots of foul smelling bathroom and kitchen products, including his smelly lotion and box it up. Tell him it needs to go temporarily because of your super sniffer. Keep it light and ask him to take it away. I have gotten rid of multiple things and Boat just laughs because each day, something new leaves the fridge or bath.

    • December 7, 2012

      Oh the fridge. I can’t even get started on that in a comment. This weekend will be all out war on the fridge because SOMETHING stinks in it and I have thus far not located it. I might wear my huge respirator. HEY! I could just wear that while having sex! 😉

  8. December 7, 2012

    You’re so much like me it’s scary. Don’t try to analyze the ultrasound. You will drive yourself nuts. Only professionals who’ve been through much school can interpret those things. Not even the tech who does your 12 week (at least at my OB) could say anything. We had to wait for the actual specialist.

    Prego hormones make you crazy, and for those of us that deal with anxiety/stress/depression already, the hormones just excerbate everything.

    About the hubs…what about sex in the shower? I completely understand not feeling sexy, but you are and he thinks you are. It’s hard to feel that way, but maybe with dim lights you’d feel better (I realize dim lights + shower may not be so good…).

  9. jak #
    December 7, 2012

    now that i hurried up and responded about the scan, i can give you a real response about… Sex and The Smelly One.

    my husband smells too. only not lotion. his breath smells. not like rot, he has very good oral hygiene, but like metabolic chemicals coming from his body. i am worried that perhaps his kidneys or liver are not functioning 100% and that is why i am constantly smelling ketones (i think?) from him. but how did his kidney decline perfectly correlate with my finally getting knocked up? it’s gotta be my nose being crazy on me, but I. CAN’T STAND. IT. i try to stay away from him as much as possible in closed spaces because the smell FILLS THE AIRSPACE. i dont know whether to tell him or not. i’m sure he’d be offended if i did though. but what i am going to tell him, to stop breathing? to have a blood and urine panel done because i think there’s something wrong? he’ll get pissed either way. but as far as sex, any position that avoids his breathing area is fine, hahaha!!!

  10. December 7, 2012

    Much like the infertility journey, your pregnancy will be filled with joy and dread. I’m so sorry for that. 😦 But if it helps at all, I reeeeally think everything will be ok. 🙂 As for the smell…does it help to breathe through your mouth only? How about shower sex?! Will that help the smell issue? And as far as not feeling sexy, I get it. That’s how I feel every month I’m bloated with swollen ovaries and have to get in the mood to help my hubby get in the mood to DTD. But just keep reminding yourself that he finds you sexy. Hope that helps!

    On Fri, Dec 7, 2012 at 6:06 AM, Scrambled Eggs

  11. December 7, 2012

    HAHAHAHAHA… omg, I love your brutal honesty! Also, I think it’s completely fair to ask your husband to shower and not use lotion before having sex. Seriously, the guy will be more than happy to accommodate whatever weird pregnancy thing you have going on if it means sex is the end result! As to the “sneezes” of mucus… um, consider it extra lube, maybe? 🙂 In any case, from what I’ve heard, the so-called “glow” doesn’t arrive until the second trimester anyway, so you’re definitely entitled to feel unsexy and annoyed right now.

    Oh, and please Google “grumpy cat”. You will appreciate.

  12. December 7, 2012

    right there with you. why does my husband smell? why? no strange lotions to blame it on or anything… and sex? I think I remember what that is?

  13. December 7, 2012

    I’m sorry you are having a rough day. I think us IF girls never really get rid of the anxiety we face and we can only take it a day at a time. You should be proud of yourself – and your little one – for making it this far! Hopefully you can find something to reduce your anxiety – talking to a therapist may be a good idea, if you aren’t already. And i am SO with you about sex and smells. Last night i was in the mood (much to my wife’s happiness b/c it’s been like 2wks and i’ve had zero sex drive) but she had a rum/coke when she got home and i could smell it on her breath. Note this was 2hours later plus teeth brushing and mouthwash and, still, it was there and it just made me sick to my stomach. Sooo…maybe tonight before she has a drink! And i really hear you about not feeling sexy but, honestly, if your husband is down for it you know he thinks your sexy, still 🙂

  14. December 7, 2012

    Like someone else said, you can’t go by your U/s. They do the tests at specific times during the pregnancy for a reason. No freaking out looking at your beautiful Chicken! Only big smiles!
    As far as stinky Professor, be honest with him. If you can’t stand the smell of the lotion then ask him to change it during your pregnancy. If it might make it easier for him to get some action I don’t think he will have a problem with it. I couldn’t stand the smell of the Hubby’s shampoo and deodorant so I asked him to change it. He was happy to do what he could to keep me happy and not gagging on smell.
    Remember, it doesn’t matter that you gained weight, your legs are unshaven or you have vaginal sneezing (I love that term!) He still finds you sexy. Do what you can to make you feel good about yourself.

    Big Hugz hon!

  15. December 7, 2012

    omg i saw another robin comment and thought i had magically commented on this already but NO that is a different robin! i am not going crazy with sleep deprivation (at least not that crazy!).

    when i was pregnant my husband’s breath smelled. his body was ok but his breath was bad. it’s not bad, generally, it just was to my hypersensitive nose. but guess what, there are lots of sexy positions that don’t involve smushing your nose against his face/body! or, you could just be up front, tell him the lotion he is wearing is not smelling good to your pregnant nose – it’s not HIM, it’s the LOTION. (unless after he washes off the lotion and still smells bad, which is likely, then you just have to work around it i guess)

    as far as lingerie goes… you haven’t had sexy time in a long time. i’m sure it’s not necessary. haha!

    • December 7, 2012

      OH also. Apple had 1:140 odds of having Downs based on the NT scan and does not. No matter what the scan says remember the odds are still overwhelmingly in your favor. Honestly, if you don’t have to have the NT scan (though I think with IVF they really like to have people do it) I would skip it. One of the first things I said to my husband after Apple was born was “He doesn’t have Downs.” I literally thought about it the rest of the pregnancy, it was always in the back of my mind, imagining life raising twins where one has Downs and the other doesn’t. Not worth having another view of the babies on an ultrasound 😦

  16. December 7, 2012

    You just have to DO IT! This may sound terrible but I force myself on a regular basis to have sex with my husband. Most of the time once you get started it is easier to get into and it’s enjoyable. For the first trimester though, forcing yourself is easier said than done. In the second trimester I have a problem with sex because I am just so tired. I would have no problem telling my husband that his lotion bothers me, but when his breath or body smell bothers me I never say anything, I just deal. It’s just one of those things during pregnancy. I have read that many woman just avoid sex completely, but my husband is too wonderful to me for me to do that to him. It will likely get better (we hope) as your pregnancy progresses, and like I said, stop getting him to use any scents or lotions that bug you and once you get past that, just try having sex with him if you are up for a trial. You never know, it could end up being nice :). As for your fears, don’t let them get the best of you. Try to replace your negative thoughts with good ones, You will not jinx yourself by being positive for your baby and for yourself.

  17. December 7, 2012

    New follower here. I am almost 18 weeks pregnant and feeling SOOOO not sexy. I don’t have any advice for you. Hopefully your DH is a patient man! Hope you will feel relief after your NT scan. It’s gonna be okay!! GL!!! (Emily)

  18. December 7, 2012

    You could try showering together. Let him get a head start. 😉 I don’t know about your husband, but mine never notices when I’ve shaved my legs, so I’ve given it up altogether. Even when your skin isn’t rebelling against you, shaving is no fun. I hope the second trimester brings your glow. You deserve it!

  19. Romy #
    December 7, 2012

    I agree with the showering idea 🙂 I also think you should just tell your husband about the lotion. I told my husband I couldn’t stand the smell of his deodorant anymore and he changed it and wasn’t offended at all. You wouldn’t be telling him HE stinks 😉 just the lotion.
    I think you should get a doppler and reassure yourself whenever you feel down. I just bought one today and I’m a week behind you and found the baby’s heartbeat right away. The only thing that sucks is how educated you really have to be in order not to get worried about contradictory information. The doppler’s information brochure says that the heartbeat should be between 120 and 160 and if it’s outside of that range, contact your health professional. My baby’s heartbeat was 185 during the last ultrasound appointment which was fine according to the tech. Today on the doppler it ranged between 180 and 182. I’m glad I have the knowledge now that 185 is normal but it really is ridiculous how easy it is to find some piece of upsetting information that will have you worry again.

  20. December 7, 2012

    Oy. Am I ever with you on the husband smells. First up: it is PERFECTLY acceptable to tell him to lay off the lotion right now. It’s not him, it’s the lotion. He shouldn’t be offended. I have been having major breath issues with my husband which feels a bit touchy because I don’t want to make him self conscious. It started right when I got pregnant, and it has been happening a lot lately (especially after he eats a salad, for some reason…it’s as if I can smell warm lettuce on his breath, and I literally can’t focus on anything else. I am actually thinking of bringing home a big box of Altoids and having a frank conversation about this…he enjoys Altoids, so it shouldn’t be a problem…but then part of me wants to be more subtle about it and just say that I “happened” to find Altoids on sale or something and hope he starts popping them on his own because he likes them. And yes, I realize I sound certifiably insane right now. As for the NT scan…try try try as hard as you can not to look at these with a microscope right now. Let go of the reigns and trust the professionals to alert you to something if anything is wrong, but don’t self-diagnose. It will drive you crazy!!

    • December 7, 2012

      oh…. the Professor’s breath smells, too. Badly. I have told him this but he gets really offended. The Altoids are not a bad idea though. I wonder if I could rub them on his armpits, too? 🙂 We’ll have a lotion/soap discussion this weekend and see what happens. In the meantime I think I’ll lay off the vegan chili so he can’t fire back at me that I stink too 🙂 So happy for your ultrasound results, by the way!

  21. December 7, 2012

    If you think he’ll be offended the lotion could just “disappear” and then when he looks for it you could be the super sweet and loving wife and surprise him with some new stuff that has no fragrance 🙂

    • December 7, 2012

      Lol! I thought about that BUT the Professor thinks big and bought this stuff in bulk – we have five large bottles of it! You should see how many rolls of paper towels and TP we have too. This man loves him some Amazon Prime and Sam’s Club 🙂

      • December 10, 2012

        Holy Cow-five bottles? I’m with him on the TP. i don’t feel safe unless I have like forty rolls of it. When the supply starts to dwindle I feel panicky.

  22. karaleen #
    December 7, 2012

    With both of my pregnancies…I could not stand my husband’s …or anyone for that matter, breath. It wasn’t even that it smelled….but if I felt it on my face at all….I would gag. I didn’t even want him to kiss me. I told him that he had to hold his breath to kiss me or forget it. The whole “heightened smell thing” during pregnancy is awful! Sadly for me…it did not go away….I pretty much still can’t stand it. We have just learned to work around it. This will not be the first time pregancy/nursing/parenting alters your relationship. It really does require you to be very honest and understanding with each other. I did find that keeping some mint/eucaliptus chapstic on or rubbing the mentholatum balm under my nose at all times really helped mask so many of the offending smells throughout the day. Good luck. OH…and yes…as an infertile…I can honestly say that if I knew pregnancy was so totally uncomfortable and often miserable….I would have given it a 2nd thought. But hey…I voluntarily did it a 2nd time…because the reward is totally worth it. Hang in there.

  23. Denise #
    December 7, 2012

    My husband has always had a very sensitive nose- he can smell everything. Luckily for me- he’s had a lifetime to adapt to it, and just rolls with it in general.
    However, to make his life easier, I don’t wear perfumes or anything- and I don’t spray stuff in my hair, and I minimize the scented lotions. I think your hubby will completely understand lotion smell issue. In fact- buy him some unscented stuff and just request that he use it for the next months, or so.
    The breath and b.o. (if he’s got that) is a bit harder… I still feel a bit stung when I come home from the gym and hubby tells me I’m a bit rank. But- I now take his ‘nose’ for it and shower, and discard clothes that HE can smell since the only thing worse than him thinking I smell gross is leaving a cloud at the gym (stupid polyester sports bras…)
    He also doesn’t care a BIT about body hair and I’m guessing your hubby might be so desperate for sex that he couldn’t care less about shaving. I’ve always been surprised at how much my self-consciousness about my body weight, hair, small boobs, etc, is in MY mind and my hubby thinks I’m totally hot!

  24. December 8, 2012

    I dunno if it has been suggested, but the best solution to the smell is to plug up your nose with copious amounts of vaseline. I do it when I can’t get away from someones perfume or similar that is giving me a headache. Vicks Vapour Rub (or American equivalent?) is even more effective if the vaso doesn’t cut it.The only possible side effect is that if you use to much or are already abit snotty, you may sneeze it out. But comedy in sex is better than scent induced nausea no? 🙂

    • December 10, 2012

      It occurs to me that my name changed to danitalkslots because I changed my Gravitar URL. Ugh! The implications 😛

  25. December 9, 2012

    About a month ago my husband put on this cologne that I normally love. Except it made me start gagging. He felt so bad and it’s been resigned until after pregnancy. If only I could get the smelly hipsters who appear to be against showering to clean up…

  26. December 9, 2012

    Shower Sex. . . that’s all. 🙂

    And he will LOVE your huge boobs. . . you might cry when he squeezes them, but he will still love it!

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