We all know that lack of sleep makes us a little snippy (or worse!) with our spouses…
You want to be like this (having a relaxing day, enjoying the company of your spouse, smiling and laughing…clearly having enough energy for a shower and makeup!):
…but lately it’s more like this (resentment from always being the one to get up in the middle of the night…or just another sink full of dirty dishes!):
Sleep deprivation puts a strain on even the strongest of relationships. Without enough sleep, couples often complain that they are too tired to thank their partner, they feel taken for granted, are more selfish and are less likely to be attuned to their partner’s needs and mood. There were definitely feelings of unappreciation and ingratitude between my husband and I before we sleep trained our son. He was 18 months old and still waking up four times each night and we could barely function, let alone muster up enough energy to be nice to each other :) But once he had the skills to sleep through the night and we were all getting more rest, our feelings toward each other dramatically improved. Sleep is an amazing thing.
And a new study published this week from the University of California Berkeley shows this connection between sleep habits and feelings of gratitude and appreciation between married couples and romantic partners.
More than 60 couples ages 18-56 participated in the studies. In one, participants were asked to record how they slept the night before and how their sleep affected their feelings of appreciation toward their spouse or partner. With less sleep, couples felt less appreciated. In another study, couples were asked to complete problem solving tasks while being videotaped. Those participants who had slept poorly the night before had less appreciation toward their partner and had a more difficult time valuing him or her.
In the spirit of Valentine’s Day, I want to help spread the love (of sleep) to sleep deprived parents. I want encourage families to tackle their children’s sleep issues and start laughing again with their spouse!
So I’m offering a special Valentine’s Day promotion. Parents who book a consultation between February 1-14, 2013 will receive an additional week of unlimited email support, in addition to the follow up support already included in their Sleep Solution Package. Just send me an email and we’ll get started right away!
This Valentine’s Day, instead of the traditional flowers and chocolate, treat your sleep deprived sweetie to the gift of sleep. The benefits (for your child, you and your relationship) will far outlast fresh cut flowers or a pound of chocolate!