Typically the bedroom is viewed as a place to connect and rest. However, often times differing preferences or obnoxious habits can turn couples against each other. We are going to share 11 of the most common bedtime habits and behaviors that tend to drive couples apart. Along with a few tips on what to do and where to find a compromise so your bedtime habits won’t be ruining your relationship.
11) The Blanket Tug of War
A common occurrence in any shared bed, is the blanket tug of war. When you turn and flip over into new positions throughout the night, unfortunately accidental blanket thievery may occur. When this turns into a chilly mid-night “game” or tug of war, it is irritating for both parties and tends to wake one if not both parties up. This means everyone is loosing sleep. This is one of the easier bedtime habits that you can keep from ruining your relationship.
Blanket Sleep Tip: Get two blankets, one for you and one for your partner. This way you both have a full blankets to yourselves, no stealing necessary. You can even customize your comfort preferences, which is a nice added bonus and may come in hand with the next habit too.
10) Different Temperature Preferences
If you love to feel the crisp cool air blowing your face and the light hum on the fan, while your partner would rather be snug as a bug, then you have an issue here. First we suggest trying to find a balanced temperature between the time. (prime room temperature for sleeping typically runs between 68-71 degrees.) You want to keep cool enough to regulate body heath and warm enough to remain comfortable.
Temperature Sleep Tips: If you simply can’t agree on a temperature, then we suggest two things. 1. Get your own blankets that suite your preferences for cool or warm. 2. Invest in accessories that work just on your side, like a small bedside fan, or a heated mattress pad that works just on your side.
9) Sleeping in Separate Rooms
Whether you have a habit of falling asleep in the living room in front of the TV or if you have consciously chosen to sleep in separate rooms, it has the potential to take a toll on your relationship. For many couples, right before you fall asleep can be a bonding and intimate time for a couple. If you have specific health or other reason for choosing to sleep separately, then that is workable. However, if you are just accidentally falling asleep elsewhere, make the conscious effort to make it to bed before passing out.
Sleeping Separately Tips: If you need to sleep in separate areas in order to get the best rest possible for both of you, then we suggest making an extra effort to spend bonding and intimate time together outside of the time right before bed. Perhaps a nightly cup of tea before bed together or lots of cuddling on the couch before you go to sleep. Whatever it takes to ensure you are still getting that important bonding time you are now missing at night.
Have your heard of Sleep Divorce? Many happy couples are choosing to sleep separately, go to Sleep Divorce: What is it? And Should You Try It? to learn more.
8) You Keep Bringing Up Heavy Topics
Let’s face it, we have busy lives between work and kids, it can be hard to find time alone where you can hash out what to do about some heavy topics. However, if you repeatedly wait until you are climbing into bed to bring up a conversation that will likely take hours to get through, then you’re setting yourself and your partner up for a restless nights sleep.
Big Talk Sleep Tips: Set up a specific time of day or week to bring up difficult or complicated topics to one another. Then really stick to showing up and making time to go through these things together. Make sure it is a time where you can really give each other your full attention. Call in a babysitter if you need to.
7) Allowing Work To Take Over
Working hard is an admirable trait. However, you can take it too far. If you are staying late at work for most of the week, working out of town, or bringing your work to bed with you. Then it is possible your work is interfering with your relationship. Especially, if you are rarely home by bedtime or if you are answering emails or taking calls in bed.
Workaholic Sleep Tips: Make the most of the time you have together. We understand that work is important, but there is a time and a place for it. If that email can wait until tomorrow, let it. If you really struggle staying away, then don’t even bring your phone to bed with you. On those long work trips, make time for your significant other in other ways. Make frequent phone calls when you can, or set up a video chat date for after dinner.
6) You’re Constantly on Your Smartphone
We now have a limitless amount of entertainment in a small personal device. It is an amazing feat of technology, and yet it is incredibly addicting. At what point do we put the phone down? You can read a book, look at the news, talk to your friends, or… play CandyCrush until the cows come home. Whatever has you hooked, it is a distraction away from the living breathing human being who is likely also playing games on their phone right next to you.
Smartphone Sleep Tips: Get those phones out of your hands, and spend some time together. Even if you pick out a show to watch together, at least you are engaging in the same content that is distraction you from one another. What we really suggest is getting all distractions out of the bedroom. It makes it difficult to fall asleep and nearly impossible to connect with your partner.
How do phones make it difficult to sleep? Learn more on our post Technology & Sleep to learn more.
5) Spending Too Much Time With Your Family
You should absolutely spend time with your family. However, if your in laws are over every night, or if your kids have been sleeping in your bed for years, then family time can start to intrude (or completely demolish) intimate couple time.
Even simply spending a couple extra hours trying to get your kids to sleep could cause a strain on your relationship. Getting to bed early enough to talk, snuggle, and simply enjoy each others presence is important bonding time as a couple, especially for parents.
Family Time Sleep Tips: The first tip is, if your kids are still sleeping in your bed. Start transitioning them into sleeping in their own room. It isn’t always an easy transition, however once it is made it will be a healthier and happier sleeping situation for everyone.
Secondly, make sure you are getting the kids off to sleep early enough to squeeze in some quality couple time afterword. If you’re kids are currently in a season of life where getting quality time together feels impossible, higher an overnight babysitter (or grandparent) to handle the kids for a night so you and your love can get some time together, and a full nights rest.
There are 8 common things you may have in your bedroom that could be ruining your sleep. Check out the blog 8 Things To Remove From Your Bedroom to learn more.
4) Drinking Without Your Partner
There will always be the rare occasion where you go out drinking with your friends for a bachelor party or a good friends birthday. However, if you’re coming home after a few drinks every night, your significant other is going to, understandably, get irritated and interrupted sleep. Not only is frequent drinking troublesome for your health, it can have many repercussions on your partners sleep and their relationship with you.
Night Out Sleep Tips: Before your next night out, make sure your significant approves of the trip before you stay out all night. Communication is key. If your night outs are frequent, consider seeking help. This drinking behavior, while considered “socially acceptable” in many different environments. It can lead to addiction which can ruin a lot more than your relationship.
Alcohol can ruin your sleep as well. Check out Why Alcohol and Sleep Don’t Mix to find out what happens when your drink before you sleep.
3) Putting Off Intimacy or Assuming Sex
I grouped these two topics because they are often the flip sides of the same coin. Being intimate with your partner is a fun part of a healthy and thriving romantic relationship. However, it is important to communicate your wants, desires, and needs with your significant other and to respect one another’s boundaries. Be mindful of your partner’s state of mind. If they appear to be exhausted, don’t go right into heavy petting assuming this will immediately flip a switch and get them in the mood. Sex is not a nightly requirement. On the other hand, putting off intimacy indefinitely is also an unhealthy option that may leave you and your partner feeling undesirable, unwanted, and frustrated. Not to mention, sex is a great stress reliever and can help you both get a great nights sleep.
Intimacy Sleep Tips: Have a date night and reconnect. A lot of the times, a lack of emotional connection or attention is a leading cause of slowed or hesitation to become intimate with one another. A date night gives you both the opportunity to connect and bond emotionally before you attempt to bond physically.
If you and your partner continue to struggle on getting on the same page on intimacy, you make find it helpful to seek the advice from a therapist or sex therapist. Even if things used to be as easy as running a well oiled machine, life changes and shift can change things and it may take some adapting before you both get comfortable again. Or there may be some underlying emotional baggage that needs to be worked through.
2) Watching TV In Bed
Some folks feel like they can’t fall asleep without the TV on, while others can’t fall asleep with all of the noise and blue lights. Even if you have timers or turn the volume mostly down. This can still be a constant irritant to your partner, keeping them awake until they wake up from you forgetting to turn the timer on and leading to a middle of the night hunt for the remote control in order to turn off the show that came on after what you were watching. Blue lights and noise prevent natural production on melatonin making it difficult for you and your partner to get the deep restful sleep you both deserve.
TV Before Sleep Tips: Just turn it off. We promise, with practice you will be able to fall asleep without it. Need a crutch in the meantime? put a water fountain in the room that creates white noise or put headphones in and listen to music or a favorite podcast of yours. While we don’t normally condone the use of electronics at all before bed, using these devices for a few weeks to help ween you off the television is time well spent.
Couples all over are removing their TVs from their bedrooms, want to know why? Read our post Pros & Cons to Having a TV in Your Bedroom to learn more.
1) Snoring zzZZzz
The most common complaint we hear from couples about their partners nightly habits, snoring. One of the most frustrating aspect of snoring for both parties is that it is completely out of their control. While changing your diet and exercise in order to loose weight (which often reduces the symptoms that cause snoring) can be effective, if can also take quite a long time. If you have already tried every trick in the book, then it may be time to consider alternative sleeping arrangements.
Snoring Tips: Different types of snoring are caused by different issues. This means any potential “cure” for snoring may help one person while leaving the other completely unchanged.
Is your partners snoring driving you crazy?! Learn more about what you can do on our page Snoring: Causes & Cures <Post coming soon!!
11 Bedtime Habits That Are Ruining Your Relationship – Final Thoughts
We all have our different quirks that may annoy others. Just like in every other aspect of a relationship, so much of fixing your nightly routine is about communication. If something is really irritating you, it is up to you to speak up and respectfully communicate this irritation with your spouse. It is also a matter of listening, it may not feel good to hear that something you do either while going to bed or after you fall asleep irritates your partner, however it is important that you try to find a compromise and do what you can to alleviate the problem.
Some sleep irritants can’t be fixed so easily, medical machines can be bulky and loud, while snoring can seem impossible to avoid. You may want to consider Sleep Divorce, it really isn’t so negative, we promise. Sleeping apart can be a healthy way for you both to get the rest you need and still have time to bond and enjoy each others company during waking hours. Learn more about it at Sleep Divorce: What is it? And should you try it?