I’m just going to put this out there: There are nights my husband and I sleep apart. Now before you start judging or making assumptions about my world, let me say this: We aren’t having marital problems!
It’s actually quite the opposite, we love each other deeply, we respect one another, enjoy spending time with each other, we laugh together (a lot), we cry together, we love weekend getaways, we bicker and make up, we love cuddling on the couch with a bowl of popcorn and broccoli, we both laugh at how quirky the other can be, we pour each others favorite drink without having to ask, we have a satisfying sex life and we make goals for our future.
Basically, I share my life with my husband, not just my bed.
So back to the topic at hand. We occasionally sleep apart so all of the above mentioned points would (hopefully) continue to be true years down the road. It is our little way of getting a full night of rest when we REALLY need it. For example: we have an important meeting the next day, it’s our designated “sleep in morning” (we have two toddlers so sleeping in is a luxury) or the other one needs to catch up on some uninterrupted zzzzzzz’s after a long work trip.
So, how did we come to this scenario? Well, we realized we aren’t one of those lucky couples that are compatible sleeping partners. We love catching up at night and winding down together but when it’s actually time to sleep, we just aren’t a good fit. You see, I’m a mover (he says I’m a “twitcher”) and apparently I move all night long and wake him up… a lot. BUT, he isn’t innocent in this scenario, when he finally does fall asleep, he snores… REALLY LOUD. So we both have very restless nights. We’ve heard all the suggestions and tried them. We got a bigger bed (to help reduce the movements from my twitching) and I use earplugs (to reduce the snoring noise) but we still weren’t getting ample rest. Our solution: Utilizing our spare bedroom one or two nights a week to remove ourselves from the annoying (I mean restless) situation. We soon realized 3 Amazing Benefits:
1. We are in better moods.
2. We aren’t as irritable with our children (which we always attributed to being tired).
3. Our sex life actually improved. (NOTE: I actually started receiving love notes again, left in “my room”) haha!
A triple win!
But it’s not for everyone. Before I started to write this blog, I did a little digging around, and boy, do people have an opinion and judgment on this topic. Just read a few of the comments in the comment section of any article on the topic and you’ll soon see. YIKES!! Some people sure do care a lot about how other people sleep. I say, if it makes you happy and your spouse happy and it isn’t hurting anyone, DO it. Who am I to judge? This article in particular was an interesting read where Tina B. Tessina, Ph.D. (a.k.a. Dr. Romance), psychotherapist and author of Money, Sex, and Kids: Stop Fighting About the Three Things That Can Ruin Your Marriage, had a few things to say about the topic:
“Sleeping apart can contribute to the disconnect that plagues many relationships,” Tessina says. “It just makes it easier to avoid each other, when what’s really needed is connection and contact. There are solutions to snoring and restlessness — a memory foam mattress will stop restlessness from being felt by a partner and snoring can be helped in a number of ways.”
Obviously, I don’t agree with her statement but I realized that it isn’t about her, it’s about us and what we are doing works for US! Remember, it’s always good to research for yourself and to communicate with your partner with what works for both of you. It is time to put the negative opinions to rest (pun intended) that come with not always sleeping with your partner and focus on your health as an individual as well as a couple. Here is article that show that sleeping apart improves sleep and can actually improve your relationship. If interested in learning more about sleeping separate, check out dedicated separate sleeper, Jennifer Adams book, “Sleeping Apart Not Falling Apart”. She has great tips for talking about the subject with your partner.
As always, sleep well… no matter where you’re sleeping.
All the best,
P.S. Ever wonder how we came to sleeping together in the first place. Here’s an article that talks about the monetary reasons. Interesting.