A woman’s sleep pattern is key to marital bliss

Husband's who dream of a happy and peaceful marriage should ensure their wife gets a good night's rest

Husbands beware: if your wife has trouble getting a good night’s sleep, your marriage could be doomed to fail.

When a woman had trouble dropping off, she and her spouse are more likelyto argue the following day, says a new study carried out by the University of Pittsburgh School of Medecine. Significantly, there was no increase in rows when men lay awake during the night.

‘We found that wives’ sleep problems affect her own and her spouse’s marital functioning the next day, and these effects were independent of depressive symptoms,’ says Professor Wendy Troxel.

‘Specifically, wives who took longer to fall asleep the night before reported poorer marital functioning the next day, and so did their husbands.’

Dr Troxel looked at 35 healthy married couples in their thirties, with no history of physical or mental health problems, and recorded their nocturnal movements over 10 nights in order to work out how long it took them to drift off.

The couples were then asked to note down ‘positive marital interactions’ they enjoyed the following day, when they felt valued or loved, and how often they were criticised.

Results showed that the longer it took women to fall asleep, the more likely they and their husbands were to report relationship problems the following day.

If the husband’s sleep was disturbed, however, it did not affect his own or his spouse’s report of next day’s marital interactions.

Well, we always knew we needed our beauty sleep.

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