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HomeNewsEdwina Bartholomew sleeps separately to husband Neil Varcoe

Edwina Bartholomew sleeps separately to husband Neil Varcoe

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Sunrise host Edwina Bartholomew has revealed she sleeps in a separate bed to her husband – and it hasn’t affected their sex life.

The Channel 7 star says having a different bedroom to her husband Neil Varcoe is “the secret to our happy marriage” – and pointed out that it had not stopped them from having two children.

Bartholomew, 39, said they started sleeping separately about seven years ago.

“When I would get up for work, he would struggle to get back to sleep so we decided to trial separate rooms,” she write in a column for News Corp Australia.

“When we had kids, it continued. I would sleep overnight with the baby in my room and then he would wake up early to take over. Ten years into our relationship and five years into our marriage, it works a charm.”

The TV presenter said friends are sometimes left “shocked” when they enter their house to find two bedrooms set up.

Hers is decorated pink and “always messy”, whereas her husband’s is filled with gym gear “and other ‘manly’ stuff”.

Bartholomew and her husband share two children – Molly, three, and Thomas who is almost one.

Despite being a relatively new mum, she recently backed calls for ‘adults-only’ suburbs with no children.

“I think it’s a brilliant idea. I love my kids. I love their company but I don’t love the sound of someone else’s screaming child,” she wrote.

Prior to the 1950s, separate beds were commonly considered the preferred and healthier sleeping option for couples but were later regarded as a sign of a broken marriage.

Former NRL star Benji Marshall and his podcast host wife Zoe have slept in separate beds for more than 10 years, with Ms Marshall telling sleeping apart was “heaven” and prevented a build up of resentment between the two.

Other celebrity couples such as David and Victoria Beckham and Gwyneth Paltrow and husband Brad Falchuk have been reported to sleep apart, with the Beckhams having separate “his and her sleeping wings” of their home in London.

The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh also slept separately.

Relationship psychologist Rachel Voysey said there are many benefits to couples sleeping apart when they “intentionally” choose to do so.

“A good night’s sleep will make you far less irritable, far more empathetic and in a much better mindset to be in a relationship,” she said.

“There is quite good research to suggest it (sleeping apart) improves communication, when you’re tired your empathy is reduced and you can be less compassionate.”

The expert also revealed sleeping apart can improve couple’s sex life due to the increased feeling of romance and desire due to space.

“There’s the excitement of coming together, the intimate part of your life can be more exciting, there’s that novelty and fun part,” she said.

The Relationship Room expert said the risk associated with sleeping apart comes from a lack of communication between couples and supplementary “rituals” such as a “good morning cuddle” or something that reconnects the couple after sleep.

Ms Voysey believes the trending health, “life-hacking” and sleep movement has been a catalyst for the re-evaluation of sleep habits, particularly for people under the age of thirty.

In addition to this, the expert said she had witnessed a shift in expectations of couples and the stigma of sleeping apart.

“Younger couples I see are far less constrained by expectations and norms of relationships, they move away from tradition,” she said while also highlighting the increase in open and polyamorous relationships.

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