Photo by Mark Lund/The Nest
Tactic #1: Stagger Bedtimes
The plan: Going to bed before your partner
I skipped the end of Lost and went to bed first. He agreed to give me at least a 15-minute bed, er, head start. I immediately fell asleep. My REMs lasted just 35 minutes before the sound of a flushing toilet woke me. “Why are you so loud?” I yelled.
The results: This could work as long as the couple doesn’t include a light sleeper (me) or a person incapable of walking into a room without making a lot of noise (him).
Tactic #2: Sex Before Bed
The plan: Research shows that orgasms relax you, making it easier to sleep.
I might've killed the mood by announcing we would need to have sex for the sake of the article, but oh well. Without going into detail, I was way more relaxed.
The results: Sure, it worked, though I highly doubt I’ll be using this tactic on a nightly basis (sorry, honey).
Tactic #3: The Pillow Barrier
The plan: Placing a pillow vertically between you prevents personal space invasion.
The pillow kept him from taking over my side of the bed and I slept more soundly since I didn’t have to worry about being elbowed in the face or kneed in the back.
The results: This was so simple I can’t believe I didn’t think of it myself. It can be used every night and switched out as needed (see tactic #2).
Tactic #4: Occasionally Sleep Solo The verdict:
The plan: Twelve percent of couples sleep alone, so one night won’t hurt, right?
This test happened by accident after my man had one too many and passed out on the couch. Don’t get me wrong, I love him, but I was excited to sleep alone. I stretched out and kept the temperature how I wanted.
The results: On a regular basis, it would be a relationship killer (sorry to say it). But if you desperately need some ZZZs, it’s okay to ask for the whole bed.
The winner is the pillow barrier: easy, affordable, and healthier than sleeping alone. But I learned an even more valuable lesson: When I get enough rest, I feel less stressed -- and my man and I get along better. So the next time you and your mate are headed for a meltdown, why not do like kindergartners and take a quick nap -- with a pillow, of course.
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