Switching Sides Of The Bed With Your Partner Can Actually Spice Up Your Relationship

It could lead you to experiment in other ways.

Originally Published: 
Here's why you should switch sides of the bed with your partner.

There are plenty of things people are willing to compromise in their relationships daily: where to have dinner, when to leave a party, who’s responsible for what chores, and the list goes on. But there’s one thing both parties aren’t always ready and willing to sacrifice — and that’s the side of the bed they sleep on.

The side of the bed debate is often a hot-button issue for couples, especially during the early stages of a relationship, as people tend to develop an attachment to a certain side of the mattresses long before meeting their significant others. It’s even become such a heated topic online that when couples reveal they don’t have a “regular” side of the bed, as the pair behind the TikTok account @renovatingourhome did in August 2023, commenters don’t even try to hold back their disgust. “What kind of chaos is this,” wrote one viewer. “My eye twitches just thinking about this,” wrote another.

Though your preferences may seem inexplicable, according to Dr. Shelby Harris, Director of Sleep Health at Sleepopolis, various factors may influence this choice, including details like where the bed physically sits in the room.

“People get into a routine of sleeping on a particular side of the bed, and disruptions to this routine can make it more difficult for some to feel comfortable sleeping on the other side, worsening sleep quality,” the expert tells Bustle. With that in mind, it makes sense why people feel so strongly about their side of the bed. But according to intimacy coach Courtney Hurin, switching sides with your partner may actually help improve the intimacy — and the spice — in your relationship.

Can Switching Sides In Bed Be Beneficial For Your Relationship?

It might be time to venture to the other side of the bed, because believe it or not, switching sides with your partner can potentially have long-term benefits for your relationship. That said, it’s not simply the act of trading sides that could potentially strengthen your bond, but rather what it represents.

Willingness To Compromise

Relationships are all about compromise, and being able to adapt to your partner’s needs is bound to bring you closer together, regardless of the situation. In this case, Hurin says that agreeing to switch sides with your other half demonstrates your desire to “make your partner's comfort a priority,” which is a surefire way to make your sweetheart feel special.

Reinforce Intimacy

Sharing something as personal as your sleep space with another person is a big deal. For this reason, trading places with your partner in bed can actually reinforce that intimacy within your relationship, as it may signify a level of trust and comfort between the two of you.

Spice Things Up In Bed

If you’re stuck in a rut, you can reignite the spark in your romance by breaking your usual sleep routine and trying a new position in bed. Literally. “That excitement can spill over into other aspects of your relationship,” says Hurin. “Switch sides, and who knows where else that spontaneity might lead.”

To keep the spontaneity going, Hurin says you don’t have to implement a regimented switching routine in the bedroom. You don’t even have to make the switch that often, either, because according to the expert, swapping every few weeks is enough to keep things interesting.

If you’re still not convinced, the intimacy coach also believes there could be a correlation between a person’s willingness to switch sides and their adventurousness in bed, in case that changes your mind at all.

Is Switching Sides In Bed Beneficial For Sleep?

Swapping sides of the bed with your partner may help your relationship, but that doesn’t mean it’ll guarantee you a better night’s sleep. In fact, according to Harris, it all comes down to personal preference.

Per the expert, no evidence supports that switching or sleeping in the same spot can improve sleep quality. That said, there are ways to gauge whether or not swapping sides is the right move for you and your partner. For starters, if one of you has trouble sleeping, you might not want to risk trading spots, as it might mess with the restless sleeper’s routine and sense of consistency.

On the other hand, if you’re prone to pressure or bedsores (ulcers that develop on the skin after laying in bed), Harris shares that switching places may help prevent them from forming.

Remember that everyone’s experience with side-swapping may vary, so if you don’t check in with your partner after each trial, there’s a chance that what started out as a harmless experiment could result in resentment, per the expert. So be sure to continue communicating if you choose to make this change in your sleep routine.

If you’re curious to see what swapping sides can do for your relationship (and your sleep habits), both Hurin and Harris agree switching off slowly is the way to go. Make sure to check in frequently with your partner as well, and remember to be patient during the adjustment period. Of course, switching sides in bed won’t solve all of your relationship problems. But if you’re willing to try it out for a night or two, the experiment may have a much greater impact on your connection than you could’ve ever imagined.


Dr. Shelby Harris, Director of Sleep Health at Sleepopolis

Courtney Hurin, intimacy coach

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