There are many reasons why couples pursue divorce, and even more reasons why they may consider divorce. Infidelity and financial concerns are often among the most cited reasons for divorce, as well as simply having grown apart from each other. Some marriages end because of domestic violence, others because of substance abuse, and some marriages end because of professional growth opportunities. Could sleep also be a reason for some marriages ending in divorce?
Some experts say yes, and that a “sleep divorce” may help relationships grow stronger and healthier in the long run. In fact, a recent report from NBC’s WBBH-2 out of Fort Myers states that 39.1% of Florida couples want a sleep divorce. This post will explore the dynamics of a sleep divorce to help you determine if one might be right for you and your relationship.
One of the most obvious potential benefits of a sleep divorce is having your own space to get a good night’s sleep, which can be beneficial even for people who are averse to the idea of sleeping separately. A good night’s sleep is essential to a healthy, happy lifestyle. While sleeping in separate beds may seem old-fashioned, more and more couples are choosing to do so to improve both their own physical well-being as well as their marriage.
However, a good night’s sleep is not always possible if a partner has different sleep patterns. For instance, working opposite hours can result in a lot of unintentional waking up that causes a disruption to sleep cycles. Snoring and other idiosyncrasies during sleep may also disturb a partner’s ability to get some much needed sleep.
However, a sleep divorce alleviates these potential issues, as well as many more. The report notes that 21.5% of those surveyed indicated they had had a fight about sleeping and sleep patterns. For them, and for others that may take a more passive approach to the issues that arise over lack of sleep, a sleep divorce can prevent the stress and anxiety of arguing with a partner over something that might be able to be addressed and fixed.
Advice for Approaching the Idea
As with any significant change in a marriage, a sleep divorce will likely only work for a relationship if both people are on the same page about it. As such, it is probably not a good idea to just up and announce your departure from the bedroom. That is why communication is essential if you are considering exploring the option of a sleep divorce or other major change to the dynamics of your current relationship.
When you first bring up the idea of trying out a sleep divorce, it is important that you focus the discussion on both your needs as well as the needs of your partner. For instance, you might want to start by saying, “I know that neither of us has been sleeping very well lately, but there could be an option we can explore to change that.” This helps involve your partner in the discussion and gives him or her more ownership in the ultimate decision you both make. This can also serve as an important way to assess your partner’s current level of willingness to explore this type of sleeping arrangement.
Making it Work
Nobody understands the dynamics of your relationship as well as you and your partner. Exactly how you make this type of arrangement work heavily depends on those dynamics. However, communication and some other tactics that work in addressing a number of different problems and concerns can be important exercises in developing a sleep divorce plan as well as in making that plan work effectively for both partners.
A little distance can be an effective way to approach a relationship, but too much can be damaging. One of the most important components of a successful sleep divorce is making the most of the time you and your spouse continue to spend together. That means planning date nights, dinners in, and other activities together should remain an important priority. Additionally, you want to make sure that you both make time for intimacy and other important activities that will keep your relationship exciting and strong.
It is also important to check in and get feedback from your partner about the new sleeping arrangements if you have agreed to try it out. Doing so can help you express yourself and find out just how your partner feels about the new dynamics of your sleep. Keep in mind that it could take some time to settle into a new routine, but checking in regularly can help keep the lines of communication open and prevent issues before they arise.
Dedicated Legal Assistance
Most people do not get divorced over sleep patterns. There are usually other significant issues that lead to considering divorce and play into the difficult decision to pursue divorce. Ultimately, there is no “one size fits all” approach to addressing the unique problems and challenges within your marriage.
However, recognizing these things is extremely important in exploring ways to address them successfully. While a sleep divorce may not make or break a particular marriage, it does present an important viewpoint in addressing common issues that could be driving a wedge between you and your partner – and, consequently, between you and your happiness.
An experienced Florida divorce attorney understands how much is on the line when it comes to divorce and is able to help clients explore options that might help them strengthen their marriage in the long-run. However, if you have made the difficult choice to pursue divorce, then a Florida divorce attorney can work with you to help you understand your rights and advocate for them. Contact Scott J. Stadler to schedule a consultation and find out more about various alternatives to traditional divorce as well as more information about how divorce may affect you.