Free U.S. Shipping For Orders $150+
While it’s a highly effective way of dealing with a snoring partner or different sleep preferences, a sleep divorce (where couples sleep in separate beds or bedrooms) has some significant drawbacks. It can negatively affect your intimacy, reduce the quality of your sex life and even cause resentment in your marriage.
So before you part ways at night, consider the following alternatives.
1. Fix Whatever’s Causing The Problem
Most couples opt for a sleep divorce because of an issue that keeps one or both partners from sleeping well. Some common issues include snoring, different sleep preferences, varying sleep patterns and too much tossing and turning.
Try to find a solution to the particular problem before you sleep separately. We’ve highlighted some specific solutions below. The best solution will depend on what problem you are facing, how severe it is and how much it is affecting your sleep.
With some issues like snoring or insomnia, it is a good idea to consult a doctor or sleep specialist for help. But usually, making a few lifestyle changes or changing how you sleep is enough to resolve the problem.
For instance, using a wedge pillow or some other anti-snoring device can reduce or stop snoring. Separate duvets can resolve blanket hogging. Below are more alternatives to a sleep divorce.
2. Use a Mattress Cooling/Heating System
One of the most common sources of sleep arguments between couples is bed temperature. One person sleeps cold and prefers bundling up with more than one blanket. The other is a hot sleeper and sweats easily. What to do?
The best solution is a mattress cooling system with dual controls. Both BedJet and Sleepme have such systems. BedJet uses air to make the bed comfortable while Sleepme’s Chilipad uses water that circulates inside a mattress pad.
These bed cooling systems are available in single and dual configurations. A single configuration fits on one half of the bed, and you can make the bed as cool or as warm as you want without affecting your partner’s comfort.
A dual system lets both of you set each half of the bed to your preferred temperature.
The only downside of these systems is that they are pricey especially if you get a dual one. It can be just as expensive as buying a new mattress. But it’s worth it if it allows you to keep sleeping together comfortably.
3. Get a Split Mattress
The best alternative to a sleep divorce is customizing your individual halves of the bed. In a way, you sleep separately but together in the same bed. An example of this is the cooling system we’ve mentioned above.
Another way to divide and customize your individual sleeping areas is using a split mattress. This is a mattress with separate halves and each half can have a different level of firmness. You can get a split mattress from brands like Saatva, Nolah and Casper.
A split mattress is great for couples who have different comfort preferences depending on their sleeping position and body weight. For instance, one partner may prefer a softer mattress that cushions them when they sleep on their side. The other partner may be a back sleeper who prefers a firmer more supportive mattress.
Usually, a medium-firm mattress is comfortable for partners with varying firmness preferences. But if one person likes their mattress extra-soft and the other likes theirs firm, then a split mattress is the best option.
Typically, you will be able to select the firmness of each half of the mattress when ordering.
Tip: A split mattress is also ideal if you have or are planning to get a split adjustable base. Each person can raise and lower their half of the bed.
4. Buy a Mattress Topper/Pad
If buying a new mattress is too expensive, a mattress topper or pad is a cheaper way to get the firmness level you want.
If you want to soften up the mattress a bit, a microfiber mattress pad or a thin 1” memory foam topper might be enough to add more cushioning without affecting how much support your partner is getting from the mattress.
Alternatively, you may find it better to buy a half size topper for just your half of the bed. Memory foam and microfibre toppers/pads are great for making the mattress softer while latex toppers are ideal if you want to add a bit more firmness and support.
By the way, a mattress topper is also a cheaper alternative to a bed cooling system. If you tend to sleep too hot, get a cooling mattress topper. Latex is the best choice. A wool mattress pad is also excellent at temperature regulation. If you get too chilly, a memory foam topper is perfect.
5. Have Separate Bedding
You can also use separate bedding to create your own sleeping island on the bed. This is handy if you or your partner tends to hog the blanket in the middle of the night.
Simply get half size duvets or blankets so each person has their own. You can still cuddle then each person cozies up with their own blanket.
Separate bedding can also help if you have different sleep preferences. For instance, if you prefer the warmth of a thick duvet while your partner sleeps better under a lighter and cooler comforter.
6. Try Different Types of Bedding
If you don't want to get separate bedding, there are types of bedding that can keep both of you comfortable.
For the mattress, a medium-firm mattress feels comfortable for different kinds of sleepers. As for the sheets, look for cool, breathable and moisture-wicking sheets like our Jax Sheets. They are soft, luxurious and will keep everyone comfortable. Cotton, silk, linen and bamboo sheets are excellent fabrics for bed sheets.
When it comes to the comforter, look for an all-season comforter or duvet like our Jax comforter. It will be more comfortable than a heavy comforter that gets too warm or a light comforter that’s not warm enough.
If you can get a natural wool or down duvet, that’s even better. These natural materials have really good temperature regulation. They keep your body at the perfect temperature — not too hot and not too cold.
7. Use Earplugs and/or Eye Mask
Some couples opt for a sleep divorce because one person stays up in bed using their phone, reading or watching TV. Snoring, as we mentioned, is also a pretty common cause of sleep separation.
An easy way to resolve this is wearing earplugs to block noise and an eye mask to keep out any light.
For the earplugs, foam ones are the best to fully block loud snoring or noises. But you’ll need to buy a large pack since they are not reusable. For reusable earplugs, silicone is the best material. On the downside, silicone earplugs don't block all noise. But they can reduce it enough to let you sleep well.
For the eyemask, look for those 3D masks that have contours for your eyes. They don't squish your eyelids, so you can easily close and open your eyes.
A sleep divorce is certainly not out of the question. If your sleep quality is really suffering and you don't have the budget for separate bedding or a new split mattress, then a temporary sleep divorce might help.
You don't even have to go to separate bedrooms. Sleeping on separate beds side by side might help you sleep better while still enjoying intimacy. Of course, that might involve buying new bedding.
Ultimately, it’s up to you to figure out which solution works best. If you can sleep separately without hampering your relationship, go for it.