Before children came along, we're pretty sure we were doing more in the bedroom than just putting away washing. Remember when you could take your time and have as many bells and whistles and red rooms of spanky joy as Christian Grey?
But now...ah, now, it's all different. Sex after children is a commando-style operation that must only be attempted under cover of darkness and well after bedtime. That's if we can stay awake long enough to do it. In fact, children are such massive passion killers it's a wonder that the human race actually continues.A quick survey of parents shows that even though we're a bit reluctant to talk about it, we've all found ourselves in potentially, er, sticky situations.
That moment when you have to convince your traumatized child that Daddy was helping Mummy do up the poppers on the duvet cover? We've all been there.
Take Danielle, for example: "It happened the other day – my six-year-old son has a radar for it, I swear. We were, er, kind of kneeling over the bed, and he walked straight in. I pretended to be picking up something off the floor while my partner pretended to be slapping my bum because 'Mummy has been bad.' I think we might have made it ALL WORSE."
And even when they can only hear you, children seem to have a knack for dampening any burning flames of romance. As Donna explains: "I was er, enjoying myself with my husband one weekend morning when I heard my four-year-old shout, 'MUMMY ARE YOU OK?''"
Actually, children's instincts for ruining their parent's sexy fun starts early, even from when they're babies. Whenever you're getting it on, just as the first bars of Barry White start, they'll find a way to kill the buzz – even when they're nowhere near the room.
It's impossible to climax when your two-year-old starts singing Twinkle Twinkle over the baby monitor. Every. Single. Time.
The big problem is that when you become a parent there are no secrets. Everything you do is their business, and everything you own is subject to prying eyes and curious hands.
So if you and your partner have the equivalent of Alan Partridge's 'special drawer', then it might be a good idea to lock your marital aids in an airtight safe somewhere they can't discover – like the Lost City of Atlantis. Otherwise, this might happen...
"My son got into bed with me one morning and found my vibrator on my husband's side of the bed," says Rachel. "I just whipped it out of his hand (VERY QUICKLY) and told him it was 'women's things.' God, I wish I could have done a Vulcan Mind Wipe on him."
Ella says: "I knew my 12-year-old daughter had been in Mum and Dad's private drawer when I found my, ahem, strawberry flavoured 'tingly gel' on the floor. When she asked what it was, I told her it was for my hair, but she just giggled – she's seen the ads on the telly."
And while it would be nice to be able to tell you that the situation improves as they get older – that would be a lie.
"It's far worse with teens," says Freya. "I was horrified recently when, one Saturday morning - quite early, 8ish - we had had just, um, finished when Arctic Monkeys blasted out at a house-shaking volume. Our 16-year-old son's bedroom is directly below ours. Mortified. The little bugger is never awake at that time on a Saturday morning, and we haven't even dared to do anything since. I told husband we need to find somewhere else to do it. Like Barcelona."
Yes, it's a tricky business, and short of putting a lock on the door, soundproofing the house and barricading yourselves in while your child cries outside, it's very difficult to stop kids from seeing and hearing what brought them into the world in the first place. But one dad has found a novel excuse.
"If it happens, I just say I was feeling flat and Mummy was re-inflating me," he says. "Honestly, it works. For now."
But don't worry. One day, as parents, we could be the ones interrupting them. (Perish the thought.) And then you can REALLY go to town to pay them back for all the times they gatecrashed your fun.
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