She explained to me though that it was what they were expected to do as they were married - they are in their late 60s.
This lady shared that she believed her partner would be most upset, because of the perceived rejection, if she were to suggest they sleep separately. She then, very quickly, followed this up with a well-rehearsed explanation that went something like "even though his snoring keeps me awake at night, it's so special to know that he is there next to me and when we wake next to each other and can lie and chat in bed, it makes all those sleepless nights seem worthwhile".
I do get that part of sleeping together, but the longing look on her face when she spoke about sleeping in her own bed belied the propaganda overtones of her generation's spiel.
As I have stated before, and will continue to do so, I am not anti bed-sharing. I am honestly jealous of those couples who get enough quality sleep each night in the company of their loved one. However, I feel dismay in equal proportions for those people who subject themselves to night after night of broken sleep for the sake of a social construct.
So while there is much that is warm, fuzzy and wonderful (low grade, blatant sarcasm noted by self) about sharing a bed, I put to you readers the list of what can go wrong.
I am supremely confident that I have not captured all the issues faced by couples who undertake the treacherous task of sleeping with each other, and invite anyone so inclined to add to the list either by comment or by email to me. Any new 'issues' will be included in the book.
This list is in no particular order; it includes both in-bed issues and what I call issued 'around' sleeping; some of the issues are ones that we don't really like to talk about (see the last three); and some are specific to a particular time in your life.
However, they are all behaviours or situations that can keep one or both people in the same bed from sleeping, and when they occur night after night, after night, after night....... you have to wonder.
Well, I do.
- Movement by partner
- Sleeping with kids
- Sleeping with pets
- Loud breathing
- Differing temperature needs
- Getting up in the night to go to the toilet, get a drink, have a wander….
- Reading in bed – lights on, noise of pages turning
- Using computer, phone or other device in bed
- Eating in bed
- Watching TV in bed
- Level of sound in the room
- Level of light in the room
- How you are woken – device for waking and the level of noise
- The size of the bed
- The firmness of the bed
- Who gets to sleep on which side of the bed
- Sheet textures
- Amount and size of pillows
- Differing sleep positions
- To cuddle or not to cuddle
- Teeth grinding
- Waking from dreams and nightmares
- Going to bed angry
- Sleep walking
- Sleep talking
- Illness – temporary or long term
- Sleeping in the nude
- Sleeping in the wet spot
Are there more? Please add to the list if you can.
I'm glad we got to share.