Are you and your sig-o all-night snugglers, or stick-to-your-side sleepers? The answer may reveal subtle hints about the state of your relationship. Of course, there are always exceptions to the rule — such as sleeping far away from him because he’s a chronic kicker — but if your positions with each other suddenly change, they could be a sign of either increased intimacy or trouble brewing:
1. The “my side, your side” couple
“This couple loves one another very much, but they also love their space and independence,” says Jared Sais, non-verbal communications expert for CupidsPulse.com. Each has their own sleeping style and refuses to change it for the other. They’re hard workers, motivated to pursue their own goals and tend to be leaders in the work place.
The only way this type of distance is a problem is if you head right to bed without communication or physical contact. “If you talk throughout the day, snuggle before bed, and then turn over to fall asleep, it demonstrates that you both have a strong understanding of each other’s individuality,” says Sais.
2. The “intertwined” couple
This couple doesn’t have a side of the bed, and use each other more as pillows than their actual pillows! “They love each other to the max… but they also argue to the max,” says Sais. “They have a tendency to wear their emotions on their ‘sleep,’ which makes them very close and committed. Unfortunately, the lack of space can add serious heat.”
3. The “big spoon, little spoon” couple
This is one of the most common sleep positions for couples, and suggests both physical and emotional closeness. “People who enjoy spooning are really comfortable with the intimacy they share,” says Dr. Jane Greer, marriage and family therapist. “They literally want to hold onto it throughout the night, feeling safe and secure by touching each other and staying connected.”
4. The “long-distance” couple
This couple sleeps back-to-back on opposite edges of the bed. If you always sleep like this, then no biggie — you’re probably just doing so to avoid a post-sleep elbow to the face — but if you were once spooners and there’s now a gaping hole between you, it could be a sign of a much larger problem. “Couples who feel misunderstood or want to punish their partner for not meeting their needs use this as a way of distancing themselves,” says Jeanette Raymond, Ph.D., licensed psychologist and author of Now You Want Me, Now You Don’t!.
5. The “touchy feely” couple
This couple doesn’t have a specific sleep position — rather, they just go with the flow. “Their bodies speak the same language,” says Raymond. “They touch, connect and separate in a rhythm of sorts that lives and breathes together.” They may spoon, play footsies or whatever strikes their fancy in the moment, which signifies a mutual agreement to care for each other without any criteria or expectations.
6. The “pillow talk” couple
Sleeping face-to-face means you’re a couple with a tight-knit bond and a need to talk in bed. If your partner suddenly starts facing you, it could be a sign he’s feeling distant and wants to reconnect.
7. The “something’s off” couple
Sure, this couple is going through the motions of spooning or lying their head on the other’s chest, but their movements stiff and contrived. “When one member of the couple is experiencing a conflict because their loved one isn’t responding to them the way they want, then sleeping positions reflect the conflict,” says Raymond.
Their physical contact will be limited and somewhat brittle before they separate — muscle tension is obvious. And if their bodies happen to move and touch as they sleep, there’s an instant compensation by moving away.
8. The “tug of war” couple
This couple has some serious issues brewing that have yet to be verbalized. “An angry partner may exaggerate his or her body movements in a sleeping position — take up more room by spreading legs, shifting into the middle of the bed — forcing the other partner to retreat to the furthest edge and hang onto what little square of the covers they still have left,” says Raymond.
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