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Sleeping Apart

Sleeping Apart | Beaches Therapy Group

Estimated reading time: 2 minutes

The science behind poor-quality sleep is conclusive. Not only does it impact our cognitive abilities, but it also directly affects our physical health and every system in our body from our immunity, digestion, heart health and more. Not surprisingly, sleep deprivation has become the number one reason why couples, who are still very much in love, end up sleeping apart. 

Sleep incompatibility can occur with night owls and cuckoos, thrashers and snorers. It can leave individuals feeling cranky and unwell. The very notion of sleeping in separate beds may seem unconventional and even counterintuitive. After all, sharing a bed is the cornerstone for intimacy and connection. However many couples have discovered the surprising benefits of the “sleep divorce”. In fact, for people with sleep disorders such as insomnia or sleep apnea, sleeping separately might be very practical and necessary.

We recently discussed this topic with Christine Sismondo of the Toronto Star. She discovered that 25% – 40% of couples may have embraced separate sleeping arrangements. Some credit it for saving their relationship. Those who prioritize self-care, which includes their sleep, experience improved overall well-being, enhanced intimacy, and healthy positive connections.

Sleeping Apart and Time Apart

Sleeping apart can also offer couples the benefit of having their own space. Even the most loving relationships require occasional solitude, and having separate sleeping quarters can provide a dedicated space for each partner to unwind, decompress, and enjoy a moment of privacy. This, in turn, can contribute to a healthier overall relationship dynamic.

Choosing to sleep in separate bedrooms is hardly a sign of a relationship in trouble. However, the process often takes time. Reaching a consensus about sleeping apart is a testament to good communication and a willingness to explore unconventional solutions that can benefit both partners.

The tricky part is making sure any decision to sleep apart is one that is taken together. For some partners, it may bring up feelings of abandonment or rejection. It’s important to make sure that it’s addressed so it doesn’t leave any sort of wound in the relationship.

Laura Devlin, Managing Director, Beaches Therapy Group