Chronic Pain & Sleeping Separately in a Relationship
Last updated: April 2023
For years now, my fiancé and I have slept separately due to my chronic pain. It hasn’t affected our relationship, thankfully, but it’s not to say it doesn’t make either of us sad at heart.
Understanding it’s best for me and my body
Having more room to toss and turn and having the peace of mind in knowing that I’m not waking up my fiancé in the middle of the night because of it, is something we both know is what’s best. I already struggle so much every day, especially because of my chronic fatigue.
So being as comfortable as I possibly can despite the pain to ensure my quality of sleep is the best that it can be is of utmost importance so that I can live as “normal” of a life as I can. I don’t have much control over anything else in my life due to my illness, so sleep is the one thing that we can.
Putting more effort into love languages
We’ve all heard of the “five love languages.” Well, of course sleeping with your partner is a huge deal. My fiancé and I have lost out on so many mornings of waking up next to each other and holding one another. So because of this, we try our best to put more effort into our most important love languages: physical touch and words of affirmation.
We make sure to snuggle more often, even if it’s only for a few minutes. We hold each other for a couple minutes every morning when I finally wake up. We are constantly letting each other know how much we mean to one another and say “I love you” frequently. We also try to do more acts of kindness to let the other person know we are thinking of them. All of this as contributed to keeping our relationship as healthy as it is and feeling like there’s nothing missing.
Consoling one another on the dark days
On the days where we do get a little sad about it, we know there is no one to blame. It’s just the way it is. But we always try our best to just listen to each other and allow ourselves the space to be sad about it all. Because it’s not just about not being able to sleep next to one another; it’s about watching me go through the things that I do and struggle on a daily basis. So, in these dark moments, we hear each other out and just let ourselves be sad and feel what we need to feel.
In the end, our relationship has been unaffected
Making more of an effort to be affectionate and intimate with one another has been made the foundation of our relationship stronger than ever. So even on those bad days, because our relationship and love for one another is so solid, it feels like we can get through just about anything. No matter how often my illness tries to get in the way or impact it, our love will always conquer.
Have you ever had to take a leave of absence from work due to your symptoms?
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