Sleepy Shoes

This picture has nothing to do with my sleep issues. I just took it yesterday and I like it.
(Get it? Sleep Issues. SLEEPY SHOES! What? It’s 3:30am, cut me some slack.)

First? Thank you for yesterday. I’m saddened that so many of us feel so ugly but I’m also happy to know I’m not alone. I think I’m going to try to remember to tell people when I think they’re awesome…so that, if they’re having an I Feel Ugly moment, maybe that will help them a bit.

Second? I chose a winner for the drawing! I’m going to try to do another giveaway next week…I just have to decide what to give away!

Now…on to the Sleepy Shoes!

We have weird sleep issues in our house. And by “we” I mean “I” of course. I have weird sleep issues.

When Donnie and I first started sharing a bed, it was a struggle for me to get to sleep. He needed a TV to fall asleep watching, always had, I needed dark silence. Our “compromise” was that he didn’t watch cartoon shows (like Simpsons) because they were too bright, and he didn’t watch anything funny because when he woke me up laughing I often responded by punching him in the face.

Eventually, I got to the point where I could fall asleep most night with the TV on. Most nights. There were still plenty of nights that I struggled, but on average it worked.

Then we bought this house 2 summers ago and all of that stopped. I just couldn’t fall asleep with the TV on. No matter how hard we tried. I think it’s due to the streetlight outside our bedroom. It added an element of annoyance I couldn’t overcome. And, that was when I started boot camp so I had to get up around 4am in the mornings. I NEEDED MY SLEEP.

So, I started going to bed with Nikki and sleeping with her. I would wake up around midnight most nights and stumble back into my own bed. It worked. I got the sleep I needed and Donnie still had his TV.

But…somewhere along the way I stopped waking up in the middle of the night. So now? I basically sleep with my 6-year old every night. While my husband sleeps in our bed. Alone.

Now…there are still plenty of nights where we hang out in bed and watch TV or movies together. But when I’m ready for sleep and he’s not? I’m in bed with Nikki. Some nights he heads to bed before me so, by the time I’m ready, he’s asleep. Those nights? I head to our bed because…NO TV!

I used to think this was very weird…and I still do…but recently I’ve joked about this situation to other people and it turns out? Lots of couples have trouble sleeping together. One hogs the covers. The other snores. She ends up on the couch most nights. He ends up in the guest bedroom.

So…Do you and your significant other sleep well together? How do you combat it if you don’t?


  • Han

    When we first got married 5 years ago me and my other half realised that a double cover on a double bed isn’t enough cover for two people so we have king size duvet and bedding then a double fitted sheet. SORTED!

    My next one to challenge is teeth grinding – I’m fine if I’m asleep but if I’m dozing off and he starts then I can’t sleep – some nights I punch him in the arm or hold his jaw still (depending on which angle we’re both at!) Either usually wakes him and stopped it. I guess the second has less bruises lol.

  • Swistle

    Paul falls asleep immediately; I have trouble sleeping if someone else is already asleep. He also likes to cuddle, and I have trouble sleeping if anyone’s touching me.

    It sounds like you really tried EVERYTHING to get used to sleeping his way. I am feeling a little cranky because it looks like he didn’t put the same effort into sleeping your way.

    • Zoot

      Dude. I HEAR YOU. You have no idea how many times I’ve included this in my “List Of Ways Kim Compromises And YOU DO NOT” – Unfortunately, there’s not much resolution. I sleep well with Nikki so I gave up the fight. 🙂

      Now…I will say this. He misses me in bed and twice recently he’s gone out late and I’ve taken the opportunity to actually go to sleep in our bed and when he comes home? He watches TV upstairs until he’s ready to sleep. Which is good b/c if he turned on the TV while I was already asleep? I’d kill him.

      So…you know…theres TWO times! Which is two more than ZERO, so I’ll take it. 😉

  • Lisa

    I feel your pain! Have you tried room darkening shades on your windows to keep out the streetlight?
    Our neighbors across the street installed this huge spotlight on thier front porch and it lights up our bedroom- and we have cathedral windows that I can’t put shades on. I want to hit that fn light with a bb gun!

    My husband must have the tv on too. I can usually fall asleep with it on and then once he’ asleep I turn it off. The problem comes when he works 3-11 and gets home after midnight and TURNS THE TV ON! Then t wakes me up and I can’t get back to sleep and then he starts snoring and then just forget it. I might as well get up for the day.

    I know some couples who have separate bedrooms- for sleeping, and it works for them. Sleep is so important and everyone needs to do whatever it takes to get the sleep they need. I see separate bedrooms in our future…I’m tired of being tired from not enough sleep.

  • Heather

    We cosleep with my 3.5 year old. First all together and then him +1 parent in his room and the other parent in the Big Bed. I actually like that arrangement quite a bit, but we’re transitioning to him sleeping alone. Which means that I get to sleep with my snoring, teeth grinding, once accidently punched me in the face in his sleep husband, while HE gets the pleasure of sleeping next to his snoring, blast furnace of a wife who wants her covers

    A friend of mine and her partner sleep in seperate rooms … kind of sounds like heaven. Decoration, clutter, blankets … all that self-determination. Ahhhhhhhh.

  • Jane

    My husband is a VERY loud snorer, and since we had kids I have been awakened by the slightest noise (I think this is biological and it happens to every women once she is a mom). On top of that, we have a very loud Directv receiver in our room–it basically sounds like it is downloading new information ALL NIGHT LONG. My initial solution was to wear earplugs, which work well for the Directv and for other farther away noises, but do virtually nothing for the snoring. Inevitably, either my husband or I end up sleeping in the guest room every night. Sometimes he just goes to sleep in there–he likes to read in bed, and insists he can only do it there. I will admit, the guest bed is infinitely more comfortable than our bed. We bought our bed 5 years ago and have hated it ever since, but it is a King while the guest bed is “only” a queen.

    Glad to hear we are not alone in this. My mom gives us funny looks whenever I mention it.

  • Jules

    My fiance snores..and talks and moves a lot in his sleep. Which is unsettling to say the least. Some nights I wake up to him sitting up and chatting about work…the worst ever was one time he gave me a wedgie in his sleep. (crazy right?!) I try to go to sleep before him as well, but there have been many nights when I have crawled into the guest room to avoid strangling him at 3am.

  • Clancy

    Thanks a million for this post. People should really be honest about this kind of thing; sharing or not sharing a bed is NOT a referendum on anyone’s marriage. My parents slept in separate bedrooms ’til death did they part. I have MAJOR sleep issues myself — I can’t stand having anyone in the bed with me. I hate the movement, I hate the snoring, it’s a claustrophobia trigger, and I can’t fall asleep if I’m anticipating that someone is coming in to get into the bed with me. So my husband and I have two beds in our room. :)) I feel weird about it sometimes, kind of embarrassed for people who babysit the kids to see it, but it’s nothing to be embarrassed about!

  • BJaxon

    I also have issues of trying to sleep when there are lights on. It may sound as corny to you as it did to me, but I tried a sleeping mask, like you sometimes see on TV. I use an old scarf to cover my eyes. It really helps me. Since you think the streetlight might be the cause of your renewed sleep issues, it might be worth a try. :o)

  • Vicki

    My husband has worked night shift for 17 years so on his 2 off days–torture! He is a police officer and will be retiring in 2 years( we are only 45 years old) and getting a regular hour job. I am so worried about the sleeping arrangement! Those 2 nights a week I do not sleep at all. I love having my own bed with my own quiet. My son leaves for college next year and I keep telling him I am going to move him into his room. He laughs like I am joking but …….I totally get it!!!

    • Jana Frerichs

      WOW!! This is what I was going to write about, Vicki! My husband works the nightshift too (11pm-7 am), so during the week we never sleep together. The two nights on the weekend that we do, I can never sleep. It’s weird having someone in the bed with me, and he’s up and down all night. And THEN he will turn the tv on in the middle of the night since he is used to sleeping during the day and sit and watch it. It is so annoying. I love having the bed to myself too! I don’t think seperate bedrooms is weird at all. I totally get it too!

  • ksmaybe

    We are mostly on the same page, so it’s not been a problem. We didn’t allow a TV in our bedroom for oh, the first 12 years of our marriage 🙂 We do have one now, but honestly, I’m not sure the cable works. We never use it. It’s only there because we upgraded a TV and had nowhere to put the old one. My college roommate was a TV sleeper. But, she fell asleep quickly and used the ‘sleep’ timer on her TV so it shut off automatically after 15-30 minutes. So, it wasn’t a big deal to just wait for the thing to turn off. Now, don’t get me wrong, DH is a cover hog at times and he is about a thousand degrees of body heat. But, my dogs sleep up against him when he’s home and he travels about 2-3 nights a week every week. So, I have the bed to myself a lot, which makes it easier to tolerate the downsides when he’s home 🙂

  • Elaine C.

    I know tons of folks who sleep separately, and in a previous relationship I was one of them. Sort of the same issue you described with the tv. I eventually “trained” myself to sleep with an eye mask, and OMG has that made a world of difference. I pop those suckers on and I can sleep anywhere! I have a tendency to toss and turn, too, so we also use the small sheet/bigger blanket trick. I really wish you the best with this one!!!

  • Lisa

    I go to bed before James. He falls asleep immediately and snores, so I go to bed and fall asleep first, and once I’m asleep, I’m usually OK. If I can’t fall asleep, one of us ends up on the couch, or he takes the couch if he’s been drinking because no one can sleep through that snoring.

    We usually end up with a toddler in our bed too, so two adults, one toddler, and one cat, all in a queen size bed. Good times!

  • Sarah Lena

    I think it’s safe to say that three nights a week, I end up on the couch for a good 4 hour span. My husband 1) snores, loudly and 2) thinks that cuddling is truly awesome. I am not anti-snuggle BEFORE I sleep, but MY GOD, DON’T TOUCH ME WHEN I’M ASLEEP. And having someone sleep on top of you while sawing logs? SLEEP RAGE.

    Sadly, I have no advice here. But I can tell you with all seriousness that when we start house hunting in the next few years, our next abode will have two master bedrooms.

    • Zoot

      You have a sleep bubble! I do to. When I’m sleeping? Don’t encroach the sleep bubble or I’ll shove you off the bed without a second thought. This goes for my children too.

  • Katie

    My husband & I have this problem as well, he’s a snorer & I am an extra light sleeper with insomnia tendencies. Not to mention our 3 year old refuses to sleep in her big girl bed. I daydream about one day sleeping in separate beds but as we live in a little 2 bedroom house I’m kinda stuck. I don’t want to take the kid’s bed in hopes that she will grow out of this phase soon. Maybe the eye mask will help you block the extra light? Good luck!

    P.S. I loved your post yesterday….I think all of us think we are terrible looking….I know I do…when I have bad body image days (which happen more often than not) I try to think of articles I’ve read where a celebrity says that they think they should lose weight or that their nose is ugly….sometimes that cheers me a little. Like if Gwyneth thinks her thighs are chubby then obviously this bad body image thing just can’t be helped! We’re all doomed! 😉

  • brenintx

    My husband snores loudly and mumbles in his sleep. I am a night owl and he goes to bed at 9pm. I like a lot of covers and he only like 1 blanket (no top sheet). He likes to cuddle and I hate it. I got tired of not sleeping so I started sleeping on the couch occasionally. Finally I set the guest room up for me and now sleep in there every night–unless we have guests. It’s just worked out better for the both of us.

  • Cheryl

    I say that my husband is the model for the “princess and the pea” story. He can’t sleep if the dog snores, or if the bathroom door is open, or if I twitch or or or or . Our solution? We go to bed together to talk, cuddle, etc for a few minutes. and then he sleeps in the other bedroom. Since he is right and the dog is a loud snorer, she stays with me. We are both much happier getting a full nights sleep.

  • Cherie Beyond

    This post made me so grateful that the husband and I are both firmly anti-tv-in-the-bedroom. I am the worlds lightest sleeper and there is absolutely no way I could live with a nighttime TV-watcher. As it is, I’m usually up 3-4 times per night minimum because of kids, coyotes howling, the dog walking around, occasional snoring from him…anything really. Since most of what wakes me up doesn’t include him, a separate bedroom wouldn’t help. Plus, I’m always cold and he’s a walking space heater.

    Sleeping with my kids would be way worse. Those kids punch and kick like nothing I’ve ever seen.

  • Roberta

    All I have to say is that there is a reason we are in the process of renovating our house so that a king sized bed will fit in our bedroom and a full or queen will fit in my daughter’s room. And that there’s a reason I wear earplugs to bed. And have blackout shades. And a ceiling fan. And that there’s no TV in the bedroom any more. High maintenance sleeper -> I am it. My husband, on the other hand, can easily sleep soundly all night on the basement sofa with the lights blazing and the TV on.

  • cagey (Kelli Oliver George)

    We have sleep stuff going on here, too. Our situation changes, but right now, the 4.5 yo sleeps with me in the master bedroom and the 6 yo sleeps in the spare bedroom with the husband. Um. Sadly? I like this situation because I really struggle with getting to sleep (even as a kid, I remember tossing and turning for HOURS trying to get to sleep) — as an adult, I found the solution to getting to sleep was to read a bit — 15-30 minutes is enough to coax my brain into turning off for the night. Both kids can sleep with me reading for a bit (I’ve trained them well! 😉 However, the husband HATES it, even with a booklight and before kids, it was a HUGE struggle for us. Eventually, when we do go back to sleeping in the same bed, it will be interesting.

    A Facebook group I am in (white girls married to Indian/Pakistanis) had a HUGE discussion about this other day and yes, we are not alone in our musical beds situation!

  • Jessie S.

    I hate sleeping with my husband. Our sleep situation is the same as yours. He can’t fall asleep without the TV and I need pitch black with the fan on. This is the only reason I don’t mind that he is working the night shift now.

    • Zoot

      That’s your sleep bubble! That’s what I call it, I say I have a “sleep bubble” around me and DON”T POP IT OR I’LL KILL YOU. That means no touching, and really best to stay about 4 inches back at all time. 😉

  • G.G.R

    Luckily I’m a person who just needs to lay down to sleep. My husband watches tv in bed (and laughs loudly), he plays games on his laptop etcetc and it doesn’t bother me one bit. We live right by a busy road and the cars don’t bother me (sometimes I just pretend I’m on a train going somewhere exciting). The light can be on and it doesn’t bother me at all. My husband, on the other hand, has terrible sleeping issues. But I think that’s mostly because he needs a better sleep schedule.

    For about two years we only had a single bed to sleep in. It was so small that one of us had to sleep on our side to fit. Not even that bothered me hahaha. I am out like a light. The only thing that bothered me was we only had one blanket and my husband is A TERRIBLE BLANKET HOG. I hated waking up because I was cold. Fuck.

    The only thing that really bothers me now when I’m going to sleep is if I feel like there’s not enough oxygen in the room. It makes me feel like I’m choking.

  • Operation Pink Herring

    I was also feeling annoyed at D after reading this, but *I* am the Donnie in my house. So I know how it is. Joel gets annoyed that I need a fan or loud white noise to fall asleep (in fact this came up during our premarital counseling) but I cannot sleep without it. Before I got a fan? I had insomnia every night. He falls asleep fine with the fan on (like, 30 seconds) so I feel like he just needs to deal with it.

    I am glad to hear we’re not the only ones who often end up sleeping separately. When I can’t sleep (which sadly is pretty often), it makes me angry to see someone else happily sleeping next to me. Plus, it is SO boring to just lie in bed not sleeping. I go downstairs and watch TV, which greatly helps me to fall asleep. And it it still takes me an hour to fall asleep, at least I’m not lying there feeling rage for an hour (Night Rage does NOT help with the falling asleep). And then I just end up sleeping that whole night on the couch. It makes me sad, but a girl’s gotta sleep.

  • Kate

    Can I just say, thank you for explicitly pointing out the pun in the title! I’m sure I would have had a lightbulb moment eventually, probably a couple of months down the line and then I would have felt dumb that I had missed it the first time. Case in point: Diagon Alley. Duh.

  • Kim Q

    For a while when we first got married, my husband and I slept in 2 separate rooms. His snoring was such that I could not sleep, EVER. I could not fall asleep with the freight train next to me, and I could not remain sleeping if the freight train started after I was already asleep. But then he was diagnosed with sleep apnea, and now he has a handy machine that keeps him from snoring. BEST THING EVER!

    Neither of us watches TV in the bedroom- we only have one TV in the house. And we are both compatible on the idea that once we are down for the night, NO TOUCHING! :o) So all is happy now in slumberville.

  • Erin

    I haaaate sharing a bed. I don’t like to be touched when I sleep, and unfortunately, Kevin is a cuddler and won’t upgrade to a king-size (not that it would matter, he’d still end up pushing me to the edge of it because he seeks me out in his sleep). We have a system where he is allowed to cuddle me for about 5 minutes after we turn out the lights, and then he has to move and give me my space. Usually in the middle of the night he ends up rolling back over to spoon me, but once I’m asleep I don’t notice.

    My default sleep position is on my stomach, stretched diagonally across the bed, so I’m sure I’m awful to share a bed with. He has to move me whenever I go to bed before him, because I take up the whole thing.

  • Liz

    If you want to go cheap, a black garbage bag for the window works too. Do you have an ipad or tablet? Can Donnie watch something on there while he tries to fall asleep? He could wear headphones and the screen would not be as bright.

  • Janna

    I’m SOOOO glad I’m not the only one who wishes I could just sleep by myself. We only sleep separately when one of us is traveling, or if my husband goes out with friends and gets home late. He can sleep through anything and goes right back to sleep if woken up. I cannot fall back asleep and frankly, just want more space. I feel so much better knowing that I’m not the only one! Oh, and I have a “sleep bubble” – DO NOT TOUCH ME WHEN I’M ASLEEP!

  • Rae Ann

    My husband works out of town. When he comes home, he sleeps in the guest room because I snore. Honestly, it is a little heartbreaking. I snore because I have put on some weight in the last couple of years. Guess this will serve as motivation to lose some weight!