In recent months, the mainstream media has started reporting on a surprising trend in modern marriages. Researchers estimate that as many as one in three married couples may have chosen to implement a sleep divorce.
Unlike a legal divorce, which actually ends a marriage, a sleep divorce simply involves couples maintaining separate bedrooms to facilitate better rest. Sleep divorces are often a result of snoring or medical issues that keep them awake at night. Incompatible schedules could also be the underlying reason that people decide to sleep separately from their spouses.
Better rest could improve a relationship
When someone doesn’t get enough sleep, their fatigue will affect many areas of their life. Most notably, those who feel exhausted are often irritable. It may be difficult to maintain a healthy marital relationship when one spouse is constantly fatigued, particularly if they blame the other spouse for their lack of sleep. If a sleep divorce actually leads to improved rest, it could potentially take the strain off a marital relationship and help people remain happily married. Therefore, some couples on the cusp of divorce could fix their situation by embracing the idea of a sleep divorce.
Big changes might prompt the need for a written agreement
Pursuing a sleep divorce might only occur after months of building tension and resentment in the family. In some cases, deciding to start sleeping together will not be enough to take the pressure off of the marital relationship. Those who have begun planning to make a major adjustment to their household and lifestyle by sleeping separately could further protect themselves against the possibility of a messy, litigated divorce by signing a post-nuptial agreement. Marital agreements talk about what would happen in the event of a divorce.
Given that people negotiate the terms of postnuptial agreements while they are still trying to make their marriages work, they tend to be more reasonable than the terms people might set when the relationship has reached a breaking point. The act of negotiating a postnuptial agreement, much like the decision to start sleeping separately, can help people reevaluate their relationship and potentially improve how they interact with their spouses.
Recognizing when legal steps could potentially protect a couple’s interests can be as useful as trying new social and lifestyle approaches to marriage for those who are struggling to make things work.