I'm Happily Married — But I Still Want My Own Separate Bed

Entangled limbs and sheets all askew are so overrated.

happy woman in bed alone Svitlana Sokolova / Shutterstock

It's normal for couples to sleep in the same bed together. But I'm not looking for the marital sleeping arrangements you see in the movies.

I don't want entangled limbs and sheets all askew. I want my own separate bed.

If I open my eyes in the morning to find that my husband has already woken up and is downstairs with the baby, I don't pet his side of the bed longingly. I take the starfish formation and go back to sleep.


I love my husband. I truly, madly, deeply do, but I absolutely love sleeping in my own bed.

I've half-joked to him on numerous occasions that Lucy and Desi had the right idea with their twin beds. And really, what's wrong with this?



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Couples would still be able to have sex and snuggle, but when it's time to hunker down for sleep, everyone would take to their own bed. We could stretch, toss and turn, and fart — basically do what we need to do in the comfort of our own twin bed. Better yet, let's make it a queen-sized bed!

As a single woman, I would state my rules as we climbed into bed: when it's time to sleep, I don't want to cuddle. I don't want to spoon. And please don't breathe your hot breath against my neck.

It's one thing to say this to a man you're casually dating, but it's another to say it to your husband.

Sure, we're very compatible as a couple. We share the same political views, sense of humor, and even religion. But when it comes to sleeping under the same blanket, we're like the Kim Kardashian and Kris Humphries of the marital bed.


I'm a light sleeper, so anything I make contact with other than the sheets is going to wake me up, such as my husband's snoring. Or, even worse, his ice cold feet. He thinks it's adorable to use my warm legs as heating pads for his cold-as-death limbs. It's not adorable.

I'm Happily Married But I Still Want My Own Separate BedPhoto: Kampus Production / Pexels

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And then there's the blanket issue. My husband likes to tuck the top of the blanket under his arms and I like to pull them over my head to block out his sleep talking.

You can't comfortably have both. The first 10 minutes of bedtime involve a tug of war with the blankets — up they go, down they go — and me kicking at his ice tentacles.

Soon enough I tire out and fall asleep. A beautiful, deep sleep after a long day with a seven-month-old baby. I'm falling deeper and deeper.

I begin to dream, and then — boom! I'm awake because my husband can't sleep. He flips and flops like a salmon who thinks he's swimming upstream but is really laid out on dry land.


His tossing and turning is erratic and desperate, and I keep my eyes shut trying with all my might not to get worked up. I try not to pull myself out of my slumber in a fit of irritation.



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Let me be clear: I don't claim to be the perfect sleep partner. Until I fall asleep, I have to go to the bathroom every 10 minutes.


I also require white noise, and bless my husband — he has honored this since the first time we slept in the same bed (even though he claims it hurts his brain after a while).

This is the beauty of marriage, right? To learn how to deal with our differences.

We're only two years into our marriage and, as of now, my husband isn't interested in living like a married couple from the fifties. A couple who sleeps in separate twin beds, next to each other, rather than sleeping in the same bed and co-existing for the sake of their relationship.


I'm Happily Married But I Still Want My Own Separate BedPhoto: Karolina Grabowska / Pexels

My husband thinks the idea is unnatural and the gateway drug to a loveless marriage.

I don't think my desire for separate beds is something that I will outgrow, but right now I'm keeping my fingers crossed that he warms up to the idea.

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Megan Margulies is a writer and journalist who writes about womanhood, motherhood, relationships. Her bylines have appeared in The New York Times, The Atlantic, The Washington Post, New York Magazine, Vogue Magazine, Elle Magazine, and many more.