What Your Sleeping Position Says About How Much You Love Your Partner

Are you a spooner or someone who likes to face their partner in sleep? Or do you like to put some distance between you and your partner, facing the wall instead?

According to a new U.K. study, these questions may be telling signs of your relationship. Researchers at the University of Hertfordshire surveyed over 1,000 people about their sleeping positions, as well as their satisfaction with their partner. The result: A staggering 94% of people who maintained contact while sleeping said they were happy, while only 68% of those who did not touch said the same.

The same correlation could be found in sleeping distance as well. Out of those who slept less than an inch apart from their partner (12% of respondents), an overwhelming 86% said they were happy. Among those who slept more than 30 inches apart (less than 2% of respondents), only 66% reported the same.

Of those who fell asleep touching, those who slept face-to-face said they were happiest, as opposed to those who spooned or slept back-to-back. But only 4% of respondents said they slept in that position; 31% faced the same direction, while 42% slept back-to-back.

"This is the first survey to examine couples' sleeping positions, and the results allow people to gain an insight into someone's personality and relationship by simply asking them about their favorite sleeping position," said Hertfordshire psychologist Richard Wiseman, who led the study.


Image Credit: The Daily Mail

The study uncovered other patterns, such as extroverts being more inclined to sleep close to their partners, and creative types tending to sleep on their left. Researchers also found that those who slept on their back are more likely to be confident and open than those who slept in fetal position.

Of course, there's an almost uncountable number of other factors that contribute to a relationship's strength and health, and it's unclear if any of those were taken into consideration or held as constants in this study. That said, this data does give an interesting picture of what's likely an otherwise overlooked aspect of a romantic relationship. 

The next time you fall asleep with your partner, give some thought to how far apart you are, and what position you both sleep in. The way you unconsciously spend time together might be more telling than you think.

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Eileen Shim

Eileen is a writer living in New York. She studied comparative literature and international studies at Yale University, and enjoys writing about the intersection of culture and politics.

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