Pop Culture: Acknowledging the Sleep Divorce

Countless couples have been driven apart by loud snoring, with many snorers finding out they also have obstructive sleep apnea. For those who have the extra room, separate sleeping quarters have long solved the noise problem. Self magazine calls it a sleep divorce, with writer Patia Brathwaite pointing out that it may indeed be a good thing for the relationship. 

She defines the sleep divorce as an amicable arrangement where couples decide they need individual sleeping arrangements, and the reasons are varied—such as a spouse who works late or even a simple need for more bed space. 

“A literature review published in 2016 in Chronobiology International found some evidence that sleeping with someone who snores can have a negative impact on your own sleep quality,” writes Brathwaite. “The bottom line: There’s more research needed to examine how sleeping together (and separately) impacts overall mental and physical health—but you should do what’s best for you sleep-wise if you can.” 

Brathwaite ticks off the health benefits of good sleep and circles back to the relationship issue, writing: “If you’ve discovered solo sleeping and never want to go back, or you’re just curious about it, remember that it’s not a statement on your overall relationship…It’s okay if you’d like to snooze with a little space between you because you know the rest you get separately is much better than the rest you get together.”

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