Husband Claims Breastfeeding Wife Sleeping In Another Room Is 'Ruining' Their Marriage

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man alone in bed
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The reality of marriage and parenthood can be stark when you begin building your family. You prepare for sleepless nights, you know it will be hard, but you aren't always aware of the ways it'll impact your relationship with your partner. Sometimes it can bring couples closer together, and in other cases it has them rewriting the "rules" in ways that works for them.

Which is exactly how one mom to a set of toddler twins felt when she began breastfeeding her newborn girls. 

  • The working mom and her stay-at-home husband are parents to three beautiful kids. 

    While the breastfeeding mom had anticipated she'd be night feeding solo, she discovered that one of the twins preferred to be fed from the bottle, much to her husband's dismay.

    "Both girls were in our room at first," the mom explains. "I am a much lighter sleeper so I would wake whenever either woke and they weren’t on the same schedule. By the time I could get my husband up to give a bottle I would be wide awake and just did it myself. I was a zombie at home and work."

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  • The mom came up with a "perfect" solution. 

    "So I moved myself and the breastfeeding baby to the nursery (has a pullout sofa). It was great! I get so much more sleep and I only deal with her wake-ups. I sleep better too because it’s cooler and no one is snoring."

    Which admittedly, sounds like a win-win for everyone involved. 

    Well, almost everyone. 

  • It's been the routine for a year, but her husband wants her to come back to bed. 

    "...truthfully I like how things are and I sleep better," she admits. "And yes, both girls still wake up in the night. I refuse to move back and he says I’m damaging our marriage by refusing to sleep in the same bed."

    While the mom clarified there generally isn't a lot of alone time (which is fair, considering they have three kids under 5 and there are no schools or sitters currently), she says the couple is still regularly intimate -- it's just that this sleeping arrangement works better for her. 

    "Moving the girls to their own room wouldn’t work because they still wake up and I’m not into letting them cry, so someone would still have to go get them, and that person would be me, as the lighter sleeper."

    So now she wants to know -- is she single handedly "ruining" her marriage?"

  • In general, people felt for both mom and dad in this situation. 


    Because in reality, she needs to acknowledge her partner's feelings.

    "You guys have a lot to deal with and it sounds tough," empathized one reader. "However, if your husband says something is ruining your marriage you should listen and you guys both need to come up with a solution to fix things. Maybe it's counseling or naps together in your bed during the day. But you owe it to him to try and find a solution. He owes it to you to try and make things easier with the kids."

  • Parental sleep deprivation is a real problem, and while the separate bed situation feels like an easy fix, there may be room for compromise.  

    "I also think it's totally normal for your husband to want to fall asleep with you and wake up with you -- it's just one of those things we grow up 'expecting' to happen when we get married, and you hear about couples who are separating sleeping in separate beds," noted one user. "Maybe he's lonely at night and just misses knowing you're around. Could you compromise and have weeknights / nights when you have work in separate beds so that you're getting a practical amount of sleep for the working day, but then weekends are your couple time?"

  • One person wanted to acknowledge that separate beds isn't necessarily a bad thing. 

    "Separate bedrooms work for a lot of marriages," consoled one user. "You both need to discuss and come to an arrangement that works for you guys. It may be beneficial to work with a therapist/mediator through this just so you’re both hearing and saying what you mean to and there are no misunderstandings, but sleeping separately in itself isn’t a bad thing."

    Here's to hoping these two find away to meet each other's needs and get the sleep they both deserve.