Mothering and Intimacy with Janelle Gullan

Illustration of a mother (with a visible c-section scar) with her partner behind her. Her partner is wrapping her arms around her stomach.

Illustration by Jessica Oddi

We recently caught up with Janelle Gullan from The Wild Orange Tree. 

Becoming a mother is one of the most significant rites of passage you will ever experience. However, the journey from pre-conception through to postpartum can significantly challenge your physical, mental and emotional wellbeing.

Janelle Gullan is a mother, wife, daughter and friend. Professionally, Janelle is an occupational therapist from the Wild Orange Tree with a strong interest in women’s health and the ways we experience feminine rites of passage. Her passion is nurturing and empowering women to listen to their own body so they can navigate conception, pregnancy, birth and ongoing mothering experiences with self-love, confidence and vitality.

In this video, we discuss the transition to becoming a mother and how this can affect sex and intimacy.

Click below to skip to the desired sections:

00:42 - Rites of passage and transitioning into motherhood
2:01 - Challenges that might arise after birth
3:30 - Experiencing a change in roles after birth
6:06 - Broader definitions of what intimacy can be
7:05 - How to communicate effectively about what you want and need in relation to intimacy, post-birth
8:25 - How social norms can influence us
9:20 - Starting from scratch and reconnecting to joy postpartum
12:43 - How our nervous system affects our pelvic energy and intimacy (discussion of feeling safe to progress to activities like sex and intimacy)
15:35 - Techniques to feel safe, supported and grounded after birth
19:02 - How our relationship with our menstrual cycle can play out in our birth and mothering experiences
21:25 - Breastfeeding and how this can affect intimacy



Jessica Oddi (@oddi.jessica) is a disabled graphic designer in Canada with versatility to spare. She is particularly interested in collaborations involving much needed representation, inclusivity and empowerment.

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