What Your Sleeping Position Can Say About Your Relationship

When we’re in love, we always look for little hints to see how our relationship is growing. Sometimes it can be as simple as a thoughtful gift or a loving glance, other times it could be a little harder to parse.

One way you can tell an awful lot about your relationship is to look at your collective sleeping positions. It’s true, sleeping positions can often give us deep insights into how our relationships are doing on a subconscious level.

After all, we don’t control our bodies once we drift into the world of sleep, making those physical movements and sleeping positions emotionally honest on a fundamental level.

These things can say a lot, even if you can’t or don’t articulate those things while you’re awake

Patti Wood
Body Language Expert

We’ve come up with this handy and simple guide for you to figure out your sleeping positions. And while it’s never just as simple as big spoon/little spoon, know that couples who sleep well together, stay together.

Big Spoon/Little Spoon

If your sleeping position has you as either a big spoon or little spoon in bed, that usually spells good things about your relationship.

A study by relationship psychologist Corinne Sweet found that only about 18% of couples actually use this position in bed, but found good news for the ones who do. It’s a sensitive and nurturing position with a little bit of sauciness thrown in. This position means that you’re still enamored with your partner, and want to keep in close physical contact with them throughout the night.

If you’re the big spoon, it means that you’ve got the other partner’s back through thick and thin (and maybe even come off as a little possessive). If you’re the little spoon it means that you trust your partner implicitly, leaving yourself in a sensitive position that has sexual connotations.

Loose Spoons

If you’re still in this general big spoon/little spoon sleeping position, but there’s a little more room in the drawer (meaning that you aren’t in close physical contact with each other) don’t worry! This is good and normal.

It’s a sign that your relationship is maturing and growing beyond just the physical contact stage, but still enjoys the emotional benefits that this sleeping position implies.

Not only that, it means that you’re enjoying a good night’s rest. Couples in this sleeping position actually enjoy the best night’s sleep of any of the sleep positions.

Your Partner Cradles Your Head On Their Chest

This is an extremely common sleep position, especially if one partner needs to sleep on their back. This shows some interesting relationship dynamics. First, for the back sleeper (with your head on their chest) it means that they are supremely confident and self assured.

I have the power and I'm using it to protect you.

Patti Wood
Body Language Expert

For the person who is being cradled, it shows that you depend on your partner, but that doesn’t necessarily mean codependence. If the rest of your body is splayed out, this means that you enjoy making your own decisions as well. This is an ideal power dynamic, both in the bed and out of it.

Caught Up In Each Other (Enmeshed)

While it can feel romantic to sleep completely intertwined with your partner, this could actually be a troubling signal for a long-term romance.

While new romances may find themselves in this sleeping position because they’ve just fallen asleep after sex, if you’re still doing this after a couple months it could be a sign that you’ve become codependent on each other. This is backed up by research from Elizabeth Campbell, a New York psychotherapist.

Facing Each Other, But Becoming Distant

Ironically, if you and your partner adopt a sleeping position where you are huddled close and facing each other, it could mean that your relationship is in trouble.

People who sleep like this may be looking for a subconscious cue that their relationship is fine, an unconscious attempt to sustain eye contact throughout the night for reassurance.

If your partner suddenly starts facing you after a period of a different sleep position, there's a chance that they feel distant and want to re-connect. It could be a sign of a hunger for more intimacy, especially if they also have their pelvis pressed against yours. This sleeping position means that you may have some communication issues that need to be worked out.

No matter what your sleeping position ends up in, know that couples who sleep together on a nightly basis enjoy benefits in communication, physical trust, and humor more than couples who don’t. While these sleeping positions can come and go in a relationship, it’s always good to talk and be sensitive to a partner’s needs. The best way to do that is to be present. Happy sleeping!


I am Jane Collins, a Founder and a Main Editor of g9sleeptight.com. I decided to create this site to share my knowledge, guides and tips to help you to have a good night's sleep.

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