New relationships come with lots of changes, including sharing your bed. Sleeping in the same bed offers intimacy and closeness, but can be disruptive to rest as you learn to adjust to sleeping together.
It can be a challenge to learn how to sleep next to another person, especially when you face issues like motion, space, snoring, and sharing the sheets. It’s also important to sleep on a mattress that’s appropriate for your needs.
Why Sharing a Bed is Intimate
Intimacy often happens in bed, but sleeping together — actually sleeping — is one of the most intimate things you can do as a couple. Research finds couples sleep in the same bed because they crave the intimacy and comfort. The bed is a source of privacy, with fewer distractions, and offers a foundation for a stronger relationship.
Bed Sharing Challenges
Although sharing a bed can be great for your relationship, it’s not without its challenges. There’s always the potential for conflicts over bedroom activities including eating in bed or watching TV. Alarm clocks, motion, and snoring can be disruptive. You may disagree on issues like allowing pets in the bed, or what temperature the bedroom should be.
How to Share a Bed
Choose a side.
Knowing your space is good for sleep health, as it allows you to rely on predictability even if you’re adjusting to a new space. A consistent side to sleep on can help you feel more at home.
Fall into a routine together.
Adjusting to sleeping in the same bed is like a microcosm of adjusting to a new relationship. You may have disagreements as you work out how to sleep together, but you should adjust and fall into a routine, such as spooning as you go to sleep, or working out signals for when you want to be left alone or be intimate.
Choose a mattress with motion isolation.
If you’re used to sleeping alone, the motion from your partner getting up in the night or moving in their sleep can be disruptive to sleep. Using a mattress with motion isolation can alleviate this effect and make it easier to sleep soundly.
Get treatment for sleep disorders.
A snoring partner or one that tosses and turns all night can make it difficult for both partners to sleep well. Talk to your doctor about treatment for serious sleep issues that can affect your ability to sleep.
Agree on an appropriate mattress.
Mattresses aren’t one size fits all, and you may have different mattress needs than that of your partner. Choose a bed together, and consider a medium firm mattress that is typically appropriate for most sleepers, or an adjustable mattress that offers customizable sides so you can each find the right level of comfort for your space.
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