May 14, 2010 by greenhouse04
You may wonder at the title of this post. Well, it’s all about whether a married couple should always sleep in the same bed together, no matter what. The only other title that came to mind was “Sleeping Together” . . . . I decided to go with a different one. 🙂
Before we were married, I was a little apprehensive about sleeping in the same bed with another person. Would I be able to get a good night’s sleep? Would he snore or toss about?
I was pleasantly surprised during our honeymoon. Not only was my husband a non-snorer and a very considerate, quiet bed-partner, but I found myself sleeping better with him next to me.
Enter two toddlers and back pain:
Right around the time Jake and Ellie came to live with us, Mr. Green started experiencing back pain after sleeping all night in our bed. We also both started coveting a quiet night of sleep. So, for a while we took turns sleeping in our bedroom across from the kids’ room – one would sleep there, while the other would sleep in the quiet basement. Sleeping in the basement was especially beneficial for Mr., as his back wouldn’t hurt as much after sleeping on the different bed.
So, after the kids and I got used to the new situation, and nights became easier, Mr. continued to spend most of his nights on the bed in the basement. And there’s the big confession – Mr. and I have not slept in the same bed most nights for the past 3 months!!!
I didn’t think anything of this new arrangement until I told a friend about it in a conversation. She got a very concerned look on her face and said, “Are you guys alright? It’s not good not to sleep together!”
I was a little taken aback – the past few months have been very stressful, so they’ve also tested our relationship. But we still love and enjoy one another just as much as before – even more so! Was the fact that we were now sleeping in different beds most nights a subtle sign that our marriage is taking a nose-dive?
I thought it was humorous that a couple of weeks later I heard a sleep expert speak on Focus on the Family. He was making the point that enough sleep is very important for children and their parents – for families as a whole. At one point he also made the point that if your spouse snores, or keeps you awake some other way, you should either buy earplugs or simply sleep in a different room so that you can get enough sleep.
When he said this, the radio hosts were all taken aback – married couples should never sleep in separate rooms! That’s what married couples with marital problems do!
I had to laugh. It’s true! When we talk about a couple with marital problems, one of the biggest signs that make us all gasp and shake our heads is the fact that “he’s sleeping in the basement!” or “they’ve slept in different beds for years!”
The sleep expert noticed the hosts’ reactions, and laughed as well. He said that for some reason, in our culture, sleeping apart from one another is taboo if you want to appear happy in your marriage. However, he went on, no intimacy is achieved while you’re both asleep!! You can talk to one another and love one another before you fall asleep, and then it doesn’t really matter where you are while unconscious!
In fact, it may help your marriage to sleep in different rooms for awhile – you won’t be fighting over the blankets or getting mad when the other hits his snooze 20 million times!
I’ve learned something mildly important through all this: it does not follow that because you sleep in the same bed, you have a good marriage. And on the flip side, it does not follow that sleeping apart for a while means your marriage is on the rocks. Sleeping apart can definitely be a sign of a declining marriage, but not always.
So, if you’re needing some alone time at night right now to insure a good night’s sleep, let this liberate you! And don’t judge your inlaws because they’ve slept in separate beds for the past 10 years. 🙂