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Cameron Diaz reveals how sleep divorce saved her marriage

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LA Post: Cameron Diaz reveals how sleep divorce saved her marriage
April 16, 2024
Nahal Garakani - LA Post

Do you and your partner have difficulty achieving restful sleep? From making noise while sleeping to moving around restlessly, sleeping together can be challenging at times. That is why more couples are contemplating an alternative solution - "sleep divorce."

Recently, actress Cameron Diaz made headlines by saying couples should "normalize separate bedrooms." Her take on intentionally sleeping apart from your spouse has reignited a heated debate around this growing relationship trend.

On one side are those who think "sleep divorce" enables partners to obtain the quality rest they require without interruptions. Having separate bedrooms eliminates problems like snoring, taking all the blankets, or having different sleep cycles. However, other people contend that there is no substitute for the closeness and emotional connection that comes from sharing a bed with your partner. Despite the sleep troubles, they feel "sleep divorce" could drive a wedge between couples.

Regardless of your current stance, it is undeniable that "sleep divorce" is gaining popularity. The question is—could it actually help your relationship? Or is sleeping apart a step too far?

Renowned actress Cameron Diaz recently shared some intriguing thoughts on couples who sleep in separate beds or bedrooms. During an interview, the 51-year-old actress expressed the opinion that it would be beneficial to make separate bedrooms more common. She stated that she would rather have her own house, although her husband, Benji Madden, also has his own. Then, they would share a "family house in the middle" where they could come together.  

Also Read: Cameron Diaz and Benji Madden announce birth of 'awesome' baby boy, Cardinal, in Instagram post

Diaz is not the only one who likes the idea of sleeping separately from their partner. More and more people are choosing to "sleep divorce"—meaning they purposefully sleep apart to avoid issues caused by sleeping with their spouse or boyfriend/girlfriend. Things like snoring, different sleep schedules, a struggle for blankets at night, and other problems can disturb one partner's sleep quality.

According to a big sleep study, over one-third of Americans sometimes or always sleep in a separate room from their partner. Experts say splitting up at night could potentially help those having sleep troubles because of their bedmate.

"Some partners may benefit from sleeping separately," said Dr. Erin Flynn-Evans, a sleep expert. She mentioned that if one person experiences a sleep condition such as insomnia, it might have a detrimental effect on the sleep of the other person as well. If a couple has distinct sleep schedules, with one person being more active at night and the other waking up early, their conflicting sleep patterns might make it challenging to get good quality sleep.

Dr. Daniel Shade, who specializes in sleep issues, advised that if a couple is being truly honest, they likely know if there is a sleep problem caused by one partner's habits or patterns. "You snore loudly, toss and turn a lot, and that wakes your partner. Or you get up at 4 am for work while they sleep in. Or you go to the bathroom frequently overnight, which is disruptive," he listed as examples.    

Shade added that even preferences like sleeping with the TV on, room temperature, or amount of light could contribute to sleep troubles between couples. In cases like these, where one person's sleep is regularly compromised, sleeping apart may be worth considering.

However, both experts agree that if sleep deprivation is not an issue, intimate co-sleeping is better for emotional bonding. Dr. Shade noted, "Sleeping in the same bed releases oxytocin and other hormones called 'the cuddling chemicals' that make us feel good and closer to our partner." So, for couples without sleep problems, sharing a bed could be more beneficial.

The decision to "sleep divorce" is a personal option. And there is no universal remedy. What is effective for certain couples may not be for others. Transparent and sincere communication on sleep needs is crucial.

Cameron Diaz's comments have reignited a conversation around "sleep divorce" and normalizing separate sleeping spaces for couples. While some relationships may benefit from this arrangement, others may prioritize co-sleeping despite disruptions. The goal is to find what works best for each couple's unique sleeping situation and needs.

Advocates argue that by destigmatizing separate beds or bedrooms, partners can feel free to make choices for quality sleep without sacrificing intimacy. Diaz's perspective demonstrates that there are different ways to nurture a healthy relationship—the most important thing is for couples to do what is right for them, whether that means sharing a bed or embracing "sleep divorce."

Related Article: Double beds or doubled-up singles? A new report investigates couples choosing separate bedrooms

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