Half of Couples Question Their Relationship After Sharing This, Data Says
A survey found that couples who were splitting this were more likely to be considering splitting up.
As relationships grow more serious over time, it's not uncommon to watch each individual become closer to their significant other. In some ways, this means aligning your goals, ambitions, and priorities with one another. In others, it means moving in together, opening a bank account, or investing in a property. And while each of these milestones may come with its own sets of stress, data has found that sharing one thing in particular can lead people to question their relationship. Read on to see if something you're splitting could be leading you towards a split.
RELATED: If You and Your Spouse Do This Together, You're 3.5 Times More Likely to Divorce.
About 44 percent of couples say sharing a bed made them question their relationship.
Once you start cohabitating, it's more or less assumed that couples who live together will also sleep in the same place. But according to new data, sharing a bed can be a major source of stress in a relationship that can test its strength.
In a recent survey, mattress company Naturepedic asked 800 people about their sleeping habits. Out of the participants, 400 said they were in a long-term healthy relationship with a partner they no longer shared a bed with, while the other 400 said they still shared a bed with their long-term partner. Results found that 44 percent of people who were still sharing a bed with their significant other questioned their relationship due to their sleeping arrangement.
"While there are benefits to sleeping together, one partner's troublesome sleeping or annoying bed habits can affect the other and increase production of the stress hormone cortisol, thus causing issues that impact the couple as a whole," Mary Jo Rapini, a relationship and intimacy psychotherapist based in Houston who was not involved in the survey, told The New York Times.
Participants cited issues with co-sleeping that included snoring and differing sleep schedules.
While the respondents reported that their relationships were calm and peaceful during waking hours, their time spent sleeping next to their significant other could often be anything but. The survey also found a number of issues that increased stress in their relationship, with 78 percent reporting that snoring was the main issue, 71 percent saying that conflicting sleep schedules caused the most agony, and 58 percent reporting that differing sleep temperature preferences between partners caused problems.
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More than half of participants who now sleep separately from their partners report feeling less stressed.
For many in happy relationships, it can be difficult even to consider the thought of moving your pillow and blanket into a separate room from your partner. But according to the survey, setting up your own sleep location can have some major benefits. When asked how their moods changed after they stopped sharing a bed with their significant other, 59 percent reported feeling less stressed compared to their previous sleeping arrangement.
But it wasn't just their overall outlook that improved once they made a change. Participants who described their relationship as "amazing" saw an increase from 19 percent to 26 percent before and after they decided to stop sharing a bed with their partner, marking a jump of 37 percent.
Choose the right time to bring up any potential sleeping arrangement changes with your partner.
Experts say that sleep-related stress doesn't mean that partners are incompatible or despise one another. Studies have shown that sleep quality and stress are related, and a poor night's sleep could cause relatively small problems to boil over.
Of course, no two couples are alike, and any different changes could help solve the problem. Experts suggest talking about what needs to change, whether it involves investing in an adjustable mattress that can address comfort issues, determining the right sleep temperature in your room, or providing enough space so as not to disturb your partner.
"Have conversations about working out your sleep incompatibilities when you're both feeling comfortable and connected," Ken Page, a psychotherapist based in New York City and the host of the Deeper Dating podcast, told The Times. "Not in the middle of the night when your partner's snoring is driving you nuts."
RELATED: Not Doing This Led 53 Percent of Couples to Divorce, Study Says.