Why Sleeping in Separate Rooms Might Be the Key to a Healthy Relationship – Plus 3 Tips for a Successful “Sleep Divorce”

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Would you and your spouse sleep in separate beds? One woman swears by the benefits of it for her relationships. 

According to Chrissy Clark, whose TikTok detailing her non-traditional sleep arrangement has gone viral, she and her husband Tom sleep not only in separate beds but separate rooms. Clark told BuzzFeed that the arrangement started one year after she got sick with a cough, but it stuck after she and Tom realized that their sleep quality had improved – a lot.

“I need a dark room, and my husband sleeps better with natural light,” she told BuzzFeed. “I sleep better on a firm bed, and he loves the pillow top. We had tried several mattresses over the years and could never find one we both loved. Not to mention his snoring and taking all the covers.”

In a stitched TikTok with another user, @liddylids, who states, “We need to normalize couples who sleep in separate beds or separate bedrooms–,” you can see the video pan to Chrissy showing off Tom’s room and then her separate bedroom just down the hall. Chrissy captioned the video, “We have been married for almost 14 years! We both need our beauty sleep 😴.”

The video has amassed more than 700,000 views and has sparked a larger conversation about the idea of sleeping separately in the comments, with users chiming in with different perspectives. 

One user said, “So many people do this! It’s usually because a partner is a snorer or one that toss and turns all night! Has nothing to do with love..just sleep.” 

Another user wrote, “Never! my parents do this. what’s the point of being married. I enjoy having my husband next to me. Being able to laugh, talk and decompress our day.” 

Clark was quick to point out that she and Tom enjoy plenty of quality time together, noting to BuzzFeed that they both work from home together, travel together, and spend time with their kids together. “Sleeping in separate beds does not equate to a bad marriage,” she said. “If anything, it improves it for us.”

And she’s not the only one who’s discovered that a “sleep divorce” can help improve a relationship. After all, sleep plays such a pivotal role in all aspects of health, including your mood – it’s not a leap to think that if you’re getting more, and better quality sleep, you’re likely to be less stressed or irritable with your partner, kids, pets, or even yourself in the morning – all of which can likely have a positive effect on your relationship. 

So, is a sleep divorce right for your relationships? 

Quick Tips For a Successful Sleep Divorce

Now, clearly, separate sleeping isn’t for everyone, but for some, it’s a necessity. There are many reasons why a sleep divorce might be the right route for a couple experiencing some sleep disturbances, including snoring or differing schedules. If you fall within this category, we’re here to help. Here are some quick-hitting tips if you’re thinking about bringing up a sleep divorce with your partner.

  • Keep their feelings top of mind. Communicate your feelings clearly and honestly, letting them know the root of your desire to sleep separately. Assure them that you value and want to continue the relationship. 
  • Prepare for rejection. While some will likely meet you halfway, some partners may not be ready for the idea. If this is the case, assess your concerns and look at alternatives to a sleep divorce. Perhaps an adjustable bed could do the trick. Check out our best mattresses for couples for more.
  • If they agree… treat this like the big step it is. Put your relationship first, and make sure that your sleeping agreement is made with a set of ground rules to ensure that each of you is comfortable. Lead with mutual trust and respect for one another and make room for quality time and intimacy.

We’ve reached out to Chrissy for comment on this piece and will update when we hear back. Do you and your partner have a separate sleeping arrangement that works for you? Tell your story and send a note to carley.prendergast@pillarfour.com.

Carley Prendergast

Carley Prendergast

Carley is a former Staff Writer at Sleepopolis. She is a Certified Sleep Science Coach who wrote news, sleep health content, and managed our newsletter.

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