How to Deal With Different Sleep Schedules
A good night’s sleep is important to manage stress levels and avoid any unnecessary tension in your relationship. When you have to deal with different sleep schedules than your partner, you’re not only risking upsetting your sleep, you might also run into emotional issues.
Find out how to reach compromise when it comes to sleeping patterns and make the best out of a bad situation. Whether you and your partner have jobs that demand different sleep schedules, or you simply prefer snoozing at different times, here’s how to deal with the problem.
Assess the Impact on Your Relationship
Sometimes different sleep patterns can just be a small inconvenience, other times they can affect both your sexual and emotional fulfillment. If your sex life has suffered or if you miss the emotional connection of going to bed at the same time, you have to start working on the issue quickly. Even if the impact is limited to the quality of sleep, that can still mess with your stress hormones and make you more likely to have a fight with your partner.
Stay Open to Finding a Solution
When you’re forced to deal with different sleep schedules, you can’t expect a quick solution. Compromise is key, but you might actually have to try a few different strategies before finding the perfect solution. Stay open to looking for a new solution when one fails.
Make Time for Intimacy
Whether you’re dealing with a two hour difference or a really extreme one, the need for intimacy before bedtime is the same. The right solution can be as simple as the partner who’s staying up late taking 20 or 30 minutes out of their time when the other is preparing to go to bed. Having a talk in bed, about anything and everything, helps the intimacy level in your relationship.
Compromise Whenever You Can
Unless compromise means one of you getting too little sleep, try to find the middle ground when you have to deal with different sleep schedules. If one of you wants to stay up to watch TV, headphones for the night owl and sleep masks for the sleepyhead can be the compromise you need. Be open to negotiations.
More: How to Talk to a Depressed Partner
Rule Out Medical Issues
When there’s no real reason for different sleeping patterns, but you just can’t seem to get your biorhythms in sync, it’s time to rule out medical issues. From snoring to insomnia and other sleep disorders, the way to fix the problem might just be getting help from a specialist.
Find Practical Solutions
One of the worst things when you have to deal with different sleep schedules in your relationships is the dreaded mid-sleep alarm. Giving up a regular alarm clock and replacing it with a vibrating one that fits comfortably inside a pillowcase might just be the answer to getting up without disturbing your significant other.
Detach Your Sex Life from Your Sleeping Patterns
While most men get sleepy after sex, many women find orgasms very stimulating. Sticking to sex before bedtime definitely doesn’t help when you have different sleep schedules. Be spontaneous and try to find time at other times of the day, even if it’s just a quickie.
Keep Pets Away from the Bedroom
It’s always easier to deal with different sleep schedules when the sleep you do get together is undisturbed. Unfortunately, pets in the bedroom can affect the quality of your sleep, even they don’t end up waking you up in the middle of the night. Keep them away from your bed, especially if you’re not getting as much sleep as you need.
Make the Most Out of Weekends and Holidays
If the difference in sleep patterns is related to weekday work schedules, then you definitely need to compromise on the weekends and on holidays to enjoy the same sleeping hours. Going to sleep together and waking up together can bring you closer.
See also: Things You Should Never Say to a Guy
If All Else Fails, Sleep Separately
When one of you simply isn’t getting enough sleep because you have to deal with different sleep schedules, then the solution might just be sleeping separately. As long as you have a few minutes on intimacy in bed every day, you’re not sacrificing that much. The upside of a good night’s sleep will be less stress and less tension in your relationship.