Men and women are different. And they sleep differently. Joachim and Miriam have confirmed this. Since 2006, the couple have been spending their nights together.
And for four months they have even been sharing the bed with their little son. They let us look into their bedroom and give us 7 tips for a pleasant sleep for two.
Pay attention to a good sleeping atmosphere
The right atmosphere is very important for a healthy sleep. Mirjam and Joachim agree on the optimal temperature for the bedroom. They prefer to cuddle up in their feathers at 18 to 20 °C.
Be considerate of each other
As a couple it is not always possible to have the same daily rhythm. Different workplaces etc. force different bedtime and wake-up times.
The important thing here is to show consideration for each other. Joachim advises in this case: “If one person still wants to read while the other can hardly keep his eyes open, an eReader is recommended instead of the bright light of the bedside lamp.
Headphones can help if one partner still wants to listen to music. The situation is similar in the morning. If a partner has to get up earlier, it is recommended, for example, to choose an alarm clock that vibrates instead of the usual alarm tones.
Mirjam also gives us a helpful tip for parents: “Our little one is sometimes awake at night. Joachim and I have agreed that it doesn’t make sense for both of us to get up and so all three of us are awake. I advise all parents to decide beforehand who will be on child duty during the night.
Otherwise, it can lead to both of us pretending to be asleep as soon as the baby cries. This usually ends up with them both wide awake and in a bad mood.”
The right mattress is what counts
The bed and mattress are essential for healthy sleep. An important factor here is the size of the bed. For couples, beds wider than 150 cm are recommended in any case (180 cm is often considered a measure of comfortable sleep in our widths among couples).
According to sleep doctors, separate mattresses are ideal. Mirjam and Joachim also rely on two mattresses – although they often lie on one half together, as they tell us. However, if you decide on a large mattress, the material is important.
The mattress should transmit as little or no body movements to the partner as possible and adapt well to the body. And the material of the mattress should absorb body moisture.
It is important to know what is a hybrid mattress as it might be a solution that you are both satisfied with.
One or two blankets, that is the question here
Here opinions differ. For example, Joachim uses two blankets in winter and a large, thin sheet in summer.
We think this is a good idea, because with a common blanket it can happen that one pulls the blanket away from the other, and especially in winter this is not very pleasant.
Children may sleep in their own bed
The Primary School for Sleep Medicine at the KH of Elisabethinen Linz is rather critical of children sleeping in bed with their parents.
Especially because the little ones get used to it quickly and the quality of sleep of the parents usually suffers from it. Mirjam and Joachim are currently still handling it in such a way that their little son sleeps in the extra bed.
This way he can feel and hear the closeness of the two. But soon he will move into his own room. This is the plan of the two.
If it’s not possible…
If it should not work out at all and one partner simply does not sleep at all (e.g. because the other one snores loudly), the best option is to move out of the bedroom into the guest room or onto the couch.
Joachim’s personal tip for couples
“Consciously take your time in bed at night in pairs. Without distraction you can talk to each other about the day and concentrate only on each other.
Often it is only then that you notice what the other person has actually been doing and thinking all day. For example, Mirjam and I reflect together on the day.
Especially with a small child, who is often the centre of attention, conversations and Quality Time in twos become less frequent. But that doesn’t have to be the case if you consciously plan to be a couple again and not just parents – every evening, before falling asleep.”
Although there are many different views and studies on the subject of sleeping in pairs, in the end it is up to each couple how the situation is shaped individually.