6/22/17

Sleep Struggles for Two: Bed Options For Couples


By on 6/22/2017 10:50:00 AM


Sharing a bed with someone is meant to be one of the most intimate things we can do. On a primal level, it’s fairly easy to see why. When we’re asleep we’re at our most vulnerable; if we’re willing to share that space with someone, then we have to have a lot of trust in them.

There’s no doubt that sharing a bed makes sense for a lot of other reasons, too. For most couples, it would be considered the normal thing to do, and they wouldn’t dream of doing anything else.

However… no matter how much you love someone, there is always the chance that sharing a bed is fraught with problems. The simple fact is that you’re there to sleep. Being able to ensure you get all the sleep you need is the primary requirement… but it’s not always possible when you’re sharing with another human being.

For one thing, it’s another source of heat - which is particularly frustrating during the summer months, when you’re struggling enough as it is. Then there’s the issue of one of you being asleep and the other not being; getting up could mean that you disturb your partner. Snoring is also frequently an issue, with one of you sleeping soundly while the other lies there with a loud source of noise keeping them awake only inches from their head. And finally, it would be impossible to discuss this issue without a nod to the eternal of struggles between people who share a bed: the battle for the covers.

Maybe it’s easy enough to put up with these things when you’re young and so in love the idea of sleeping apart is terrifying. Over time, however, it can present a real problem. This can then be complicated by the fact that you’re both verging on sleep deprivation, which can mean you’re already in a bad mood the moment you get up in the morning.

So rather than struggling on and sharing a bed for the sake of convention, what are the options?

Sleep Separately. This is best suited if the main issue keeping one of you awake is snoring.

There are various treatments and supposed hacks that you can use to reduce snoring but, frankly, few of them work. Losing weight can help as can patches to open nasal airways, but they’re not foolproof. Sometimes, snoring is caused by a condition called sleep apnea. Diagnosing this involves going through a sleep study but, if it is found to be the root of one of your snoring, the problem doesn’t end there. Treating sleep apnea involves the sufferer using a machine called a CPAP, which is not quiet in and of itself - so the problem of noise will still remain for the other person!

If noise is the problem, then sleeping in separate rooms is by far the best option. That’s in terms of both your relationship and the quality of sleep that you are going to get.

It might be something that you don’t like to consider, but a surprising number of perfectly happy, healthy couples choose not to share a bed. They even believe that their relationship is all the better for it. So if you have space, have a long hard think about the potential benefits you can reap.
  
Split King Beds


Split king beds are a relatively new innovation but, if you don’t want to sleep in separate rooms, they could hugely benefit your sleeping arrangements.

The idea is simple; a split king bed is actually two beds in one frame. Two smaller mattresses are positioned side-by-side and have individual springs and supports. However, when you throw a comforter over the top, it appears as if they are just an ordinary king bed.

The benefits to these beds are many, and they’re surprisingly easier to live with than one might initially expect. For one thing, if one of you wants to get up during the night, there’s no risk of disturbing your partner by making them roll unexpectedly as your weight leaves the mattress. Nor does switching to this kind of bed mean a complete rethink of your bedding; all you need are a few split king sheets as a new investment, but otherwise, your existing pillows and comforters will more than suffice.

So if you want the feel of sharing a bed without any of the inconvenience and terror of disturbing your partner, then this could be the right option for you.
  
Single Beds. Two single beds are perhaps the best option if your major issue with sharing a bed is one of heat. If you live in a hot climate or like to keep the bedroom warm, then trying to sleep next to another person is next to impossible. The more you both struggle to sleep, the crankier you get with one another - it becomes a vicious cycle.

With two single beds, you’re able to share a bedroom and thus enjoy the intimacy there, but you are then nicely separated when it comes to your body heat. You can spread out like a starfish and have your own fan, never having to worry about your partner complaining it’s too cold or telling you to move over.

Admittedly, this is perhaps the most expensive option. You will have to buy two new beds and suitable bedding, which is not the cheapest of tasks. One option if you’re looking to cut costs is to keep your existing bed and buy a second smaller bed for the time being - you can take turns sleeping in the big bed for the moment! Then, when finances are a little more free, you can move to the two separate beds arrangement and finally get a good night’s sleep.

Separate Bedding


So what if your main problem is not snoring, body heat, or worries of disturbance - but you’re just sick and tired of having to fight over the covers? This is a particular problem in winter, as we all seek to huddle down and preserve our body heat. Our sleeping mind doesn’t take kindly to someone else taking the covers as they try to do the same thing!

If there’s no other issue with sharing a bed, then opting for entirely separate covers on the same bed might be your best option. This allows you each to have “your” cover, and should naturally keep you separate during the night. If you do somehow end up in possession of each other’s covers, then it’ll be easier to free yours back from their grip due to its smaller size.

It’s also worth noting that this is a relatively inexpensive solution to the problems that have been discussed, so it might be worth trying first to see if you really need to take any of the more drastic steps.

The only downside to this option is that it can make your bed look a little disorganized during the day. However, so long as you choose the same sheets, you can add an extra large throw to cover them without disturbing the overall aesthetic appearance.


Hopefully, one of the above options will finally allow you both to sleep soundly. Just remember that if this is an issue you’re experiencing, it’s best for the health of your relationship to confront it head on. It’s not going to vanish without intervention from you both, so tackle it together until you find something that works for you both.

About Angela

Angela is a freelance writer and blogger, blessed with 3 daughters, 4 cats, 1 needy dog, and 1 very supportive husband.

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