Here’s Why Sleeping in Separate Beds After a Fight is Okay

Remember those old TV shows where sleeping in separate beds after a fight was for couples who couldn’t stand each other? It seemed like a relic of the past, but what if there’s more to it than we thought? Today, “sleep divorce” is a real phenomenon, and it might just be the secret sauce to maintaining a healthy relationship.

From understanding each other’s love languages to to good communication and questions, our following thought might help you if you think, that sleeping in separate beds after a fight is terrible.

woman sleeping alone in a bed sad and tired

Reclaiming Your Space: The Power of Sleep Separation

In our culture, there’s a widespread belief that couples should share a bed every night. But what if this isn’t always the best approach? Could taking a break from your partner’s proximity, especially after a disagreement, actually be beneficial? It turns out, it might be just what the doctor ordered.

Gaining Clarity Through Separation

Have you ever gone to bed angry and woken up feeling like a whole new person? Sleeping in separate beds, or even on the couch for a night, can provide the space needed to diffuse tension and view the issue from a fresh perspective. It’s like hitting the reset button on your emotions.

The Surprising Relationship Benefits

If you’ve ever considered sleeping apart from your partner following an argument, you’re not alone. A survey by The Sleep Foundation found that 52.9% of adults who slept separately for various reasons reported better sleep quality, gaining an extra 37 minutes of slumber per night. Some even returned to sharing a bed because they missed their partner.

Stronger Marriages Through Sleep Separation

Susan Heitler, PhD, author of “The Power of Two: Secrets of a Strong and Loving Marriage,” notes that many clients who sleep separately experience better marriages as a result. It seems that a little space can go a long way in maintaining a healthy relationship.

The Communication Conundrum

Of course, there’s a flip side to every coin. Sleeping apart during a fight might indicate a communication breakdown or an unhealthy way of dealing with conflict. Dr. Sarah Schewitz, a love and relationship psychologist, advises against long-term sleep separation during arguments, as it can foster disconnection and resentment.

When It’s Okay to Sleep Apart

While Dr. Schewitz discourages frequent sleep separation, she does acknowledge that it can be beneficial in the short term. “The only time I think it’s appropriate to sleep apart when fighting is for one, maybe two nights if a fight is really fresh and being in the same bed with your partner triggers you to the point where you can’t sleep.” If it becomes a recurring pattern, seeking help from a couples therapist is a wise step.

Sleep, Conflict, and Relationship Dynamics

For many, a good night’s sleep is essential for thinking positively and communicating effectively. Research even suggests that inadequate sleep can lead to more arguments. A study from Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center found that couples who slept less than seven hours a night were more likely to argue or be mean to each other, with inflammatory markers rising for each hour of lost sleep.

The Restorative Power of Solitude

Not everyone has the luxury of a second bed, but those who do often find it a sanctuary. Sleeping alone can be incredibly restorative, allowing you to appreciate your relationship more, imperfections and all. Every relationship is unique, and if spending a night apart helps you hit the reset button, it’s worth considering.

Sleeping in Separate Beds After a Fight

In conclusion, sleeping in separate beds after a fight isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution, but it’s a tool worth having in your relationship toolkit. It can provide the clarity and restorative rest needed to navigate conflicts with a clear mind. So, if you find yourself in the midst of a disagreement, don’t hesitate to give yourself permission to sleep apart when needed. After all, a well-rested mind is often the key to a stronger, more loving connection.