Uh-Oh. Paul and I Aren’t Sleeping in the Same Bed Anymore

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That's really our bedroom! But it's only that clean because our apartment is for sale.

I never thought it would happen to us. In fact, when I heard about couples who slept separately, I assumed their marriages were doomed.

But I kind of don’t mind sleeping apart! Here’s how it started:

Paul hurt his shoulder–badly–back in May, and since then, he’s comfortable only when he snoozes on his back. Unfortunately, back-sleeping is also the position in which he’s most likely to snore. Worse, his snores are so loud you can hear them in the hallway outside of our apartment (I tested yesterday).

Since I wasn’t getting much sleep, I was getting sick. Paul took notice. Although he always returns to the living room after he lies with me in our bedroom, waiting for me to fall asleep, the other night, he didn’t come back to our room.

I never slept more soundly in my adult life.

I told him so in the morning. Sure, I was upset to see that he spent the night on our couch, but I was so well-rested that the sadness took a backseat to how great I felt. Then, Paul offered to stay on the couch each night. As much as I wanted to take him up on that gracious offer in that moment (lest he change his mind), my heart hurt.

“Do you sleep okay on the couch?” I asked, assuming our sofa wasn’t nearly as cozy as our exceedingly plush mattress.

“Better there than in the bed,” he admitted, “because no one’s kicking me and yelling at me to stop snoring.”

It’s a win-win.

The night before and of his birthday last week (I can’t believe it’s been a year since his I had to keep that big secret from him!), we went to sleep together in our bed. The snoring was a reminder of how lucky I was to have my husband next to me.

But I didn’t protest when he offered to stay on the couch when the workweek started.

Admit it: Have you ever enjoyed sleeping apart from your significant other? Or would you be devastated if you didn’t share a bed with each other every night? (I thought I would be!)

More About Married Life
Marriage First: You’re the Only Couple Without Kids
How Meeting Other Couples Is Like Meeting Other Singles
Can You Ever Spend Too Much Time with Your Spouse?

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  • Aprilahh

    I hate when my other half wants to sleep away from me (only happens after a fight, so maybe that’s the part I hate); he doesn’t snore if he isn’t on his back or drunk 😉

    But when he is away, I love to have the bed to myself for one or two nights, though it’s harder to fall asleep… Overall, I think I would value my sleep enough (or his, if I was disrupting him) to make the choice to sleep in another bed. Couch? Hell no!

    • mereditor

      Yeah, I’d be sad if we only slept apart after fights :( I’m glad you agree that a good night’s sleep is so important!

      • Aprilahh

        Maybe if I coped with having no sleep I wouldn’t :) But I am a MONSTER without it!

  • Melissa Savage

    Are you kidding? I ADORE sleeping apart and very much look forward to the rare times we have the opportunity to do it. The best compromise I have found, that doesn’t involve separate rooms, is the king size bed. We only have a queen size at home, and it’s not quite big enough for two people to be properly comfortable. When we stay in hotels with a king bed it’s a dream. He gets cuddles to help him sleep, while I get the space I need to help me sleep

    • mereditor

      We’re in a queen-size bed too and our #1 criteria for a new house: that the master bedroom can fit a king-size bed!

  • 27 and a PhD

    A good night sleep takes the front seat for both of us. One thing honey did was go to a sleep clinic and get one of those ugly machines, but ever since that, he sleeps so well and I don’t have to wake him up or sleep in our guest room when he channels his inner bear. I’ve been thinking about going to a sleep clinic as I wake up a lot during the night, and I move a lot and rarely do I get the deep sleep I crave. You’re not the only one. We’d rather wake up rested than be cranky the next day. Even if it means sleeping apart once in a while. Wishing for a speedy recovery for Paul!

    • mereditor

      Thank you! I’m glad your guy is sleeping better, and I hope you start to soon!

  • Serena Morris

    OMGosh I thought we were the only happily married couple that did this! Thank you so much for telling your story now I don’t feel so alone!! My husband started sleeping on the couch in his bachelor days, falling asleep to the TV. Now he has to have the TV on all night (if I turn it off he immediately wakes up and says “I was watching that!”) plus he snores LOUDLY too! I have to have complete darkness and silence, so for us, his sleeping on the couch is a good thing. He doesn’t have to change his habits, and I still get a good nights sleep.

    • mereditor

      That’s exactly why I did this post–I knew we couldn’t be the only ones with this sleeping arrangement! I’m glad to hear it’s working for you too. Thanks for commenting!

  • Soapie0

    We’ve been happily married for over 18 years. One of the reasons we’re happy is because we don’t sleep together. If I told you all the stories about my husband’s snoring you would swear I was making it up. It’s beyond horrible. And he’s had the surgery. And the sleep machine. And on and on. After trying to do what we thought we were supposed to do we finally gave up and now we blissfully sleep apart. I’m in the master and he’s in the guest bedroom. When we have company he comes back and sleeps with me. We sleep together on vacations (because who can afford two hotel rooms?). But, the best nights are when we cuddle together and then he kisses me and says, “Goodnight…” and slips out and goes down the hall and shuts his own door and our house sleeps in peace.