How to Deal With a Partner Who Has a Different Sleeping Pattern?

Sleeping in the same bed as your partner is one of the most intimate actions that you’ll do; however, this can cause problems which require a lot of patience whether this is their weird sleeping position where they take up all the room or their loud snoring.

However, other issues are becoming increasingly common which is if you both have different work schedules. With modern society, the usual 9-5 job is becoming less familiar with work now becoming more flexible.

What can compound this is if you both also have different sleep schedules where one likes to wake up early whereas the other likes to stay awake into the early hours while waking up later.

This can cause your sleep quality to diminish leading to a strained relationship while sleep deprivation can affect the performance throughout the day.

Think of it this way; you spend around 1/3 of your life sleeping, so if you’re not content with your sleeping environment that’s a huge part of your life that you’ll spend being unhappy.

If you have different sleep schedules, then all is not lost, and there are several steps you can take improve your sleeping situation to make sure that you both get the high quality sleep you deserve.

Sleep in separate rooms

Sleeping in separate beds isn’t quite the taboo that it used to be. A poll conducted by YouGov questioned 2000 UK couples about there sleeping habits, and the results revealed said that one in seven couples would prefer to sleep in separate beds.

15% also said they would sleep in separate beds if they had space in their home.

The study also proved that despite wanting to sleep in separate beds this didn’t mean that they weren’t still attracted to their partner with 76% of those surveyed saying they would instead share the same bed as their partner. So this means that the underlying issue is their different sleep habits.


This is a process that many couples swear by, and it may feel odd at first, but it means that you’ll both get the sleep that you need, while still being able to spend time together when you’re awake. If anything it makes you both happier giving you a stronger relationship.

Treat any existing sleep disorders

The fact that one of you can’t get to sleep until the early hours of the morning could be due to a more complex sleeping disorder which could be insomnia. Even if you’re not sure, it’s best to visit a doctor because it’s essential to have these types of issues diagnosed.

An issue such as insomnia means that you struggle to get to sleep for hours on end, so if you struggle to fall asleep and feel groggy and tired in the morning, then this means that you’re not getting enough restful REM sleep.

If there is a successful diagnosis, then you can follow a treatment plan that will get rid of the problem which not only good for the sufferer but also for their partner who can now also experience a better nights sleep.

Respect each other's commitments

One way to make this work while remaining in the same bed is to be courteous to each other. So regardless of whether it’s early morning or late at night be aware that your partner is in a deep sleep and won’t appreciate being disturbed.

Here are some examples:

If you go to sleep first when you wake up to try and be quieter so you don’t disturb them which may mean you have to get ready in another room.

If you’re still awake and you want to watch TV or read a book while the other wants to go to bed then take it to another room where they won't be disturbed.

If the bedroom is the only place that you can watch TV or use your phone, then either use headphones or turn it onto to night mode which utilises a darker screen and limits the amount of light emitted.

If you wake up earlier, don’t have a loud buzzing alarm clock and try using a vibrating alarm clock or a vibrating wristband watch.

If you like to have a fan on then try to use a silent fan which won't disturb your partner.

Generally, when you go about your sleeping life try to put yourself in the other person shoes, and you’ll find that you both will sleep much better.

Make a sleep-friendly environment

Regardless of what time you prefer to go to sleep, we all sleep best when the environment is tailored towards sleep. You need to ensure that the room is dark, cool with minimal noise.

A comfortable mattress and pillow that suits your sleeping style is also a must to ensure that you wake feeling fully rested and rejuvenated. This is even more important if your living space is small.

To create the best sleep environment, this extends into the mornings so you may need blackout curtains to stop the light from entering the room.

By creating a strong sleeping environment, it’ll mean that you spend longer in a deeper REM sleep meaning that whoever is sleeping is less likely to be woken by the other person. Fewer disturbances equal a happier life.

Another key consideration to your sleeping environment is the temperature:

Additional Sleep Cooling Resources

Best Air Conditioner

Best Dehumidifiers

Quiet fans

Think of the positives

In an ideal world, both of you would go to bed and wake up at the same time every day. However, this doesn’t have to be all doom and gloom because by having different sleeping schedules it gives you a more significant opportunity to have time for yourself.

This means you have more time to follow your passions and develop your hobbies or spend time doing activities such as reading or thinking. You can even use this time to leave the house altogether and meet family and friends.

It might be just a couple of hours each evening, but If you develop skill in these two hours, then over a year this all adds up. Self-development is incredibly, and this gives you the opportunity to make great strides.


If sleeping in the same bed is something you both want to do without being interrupted by the other person not being ready to go to sleep then to fix this you’ll both need to compromise.

For example, if you like to go to bed at 9 pm, but your partner prefers to stay awake until 11 pm, then you can aim to meet in the middle by both going to bed at 10 pm. You won’t be able to instantly make this change so you’ll both need to gradually move towards your goal time by 15 minutes every few days until you’ve both reached it, so your body has enough time to adjust.

This won’t always be possible for example if one of you works night shifts or very early morning shifts then you need to keep communicating to ensure that you both know each other's schedules especially if you work a shift pattern.

Leave a Comment