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Bedroom

On my blog entry entitled Staying Married While Healing from DID, a reader posted the following comment:

Can I ask how we can bring up the topic of wanting and needing our own bedroom? Whenever we’ve made comments about it, he doesn’t take me seriously. I did convince him that we had to have a king size bed though and that helps some, as we have a huge barrier between us of stuffies and our fuzzy blanket that he doesn’t like to get too close to. But how do I convince him that I’m not trying to be mean, I just need a sex free zone and a space to call our own? ~ Annelisa

Let me share how I got my own bedroom. When I started the healing process, I got sick … a lot. I would move into the guest bedroom so I wouldn’t get hub sick. I noticed that I slept better when I wasn’t sharing a bed with another person. Once I realized this, I stopped dissociating/switching at night and was aware of how frequently I was awakened by hub’s presence (frequently by his snoring). I used his snoring as an excuse to move to the guest bedroom halfway through the night. This went on for several months … I would go to sleep in our bed, move in the middle of the night, and awaken in the guest bedroom.

I told my therapist that I really wished I had my own room, and he asked why I didn’t. Like you, I didn’t want to hurt hub’s feelings. However, I reached a point that I really needed my own room, and the weight of that need was greater than my fear of upsetting hub.

I finally told hub that I decided to move into the guest bedroom because of his snoring. He objected at first, saying that married people are supposed to sleep together. I pointed out that the operative word was “sleep,” and this half of the married couple was not getting much sleep. I told him that I was not making a statement about our marriage and that this would not interfere with our sex life. (I had a longstanding rule of no sex after 9:00 p.m., and we always go to bed later than that.) Even though I wasn’t in the best place emotionally for sex, I pushed through to have sex a little more frequently for the first few weeks to drive home the point that my relocation was not a sign of wanting a marital separation.

We have had our own bedrooms for years now, and hub is long over caring about having separate bedrooms. He can keep his bedroom as messy as he wants, and mine is always clean. I have a “no sex” rule in my bedroom – that only happens in his room. He is just fine with it. Child abuse survivors don’t typically know how to set boundaries. This is a good opportunity for practice.

Related Topic:

Setting Boundaries in the Bedroom after Child Abuse

Photo credit: Faith Allen

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