Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Bed Etiquette

Just do not wake me....
I'm not talking about the naughty stuff, people.

There are plenty of web sources for that sort of thing and, frankly, I'm shocked that you would even think that this was on the agenda--this is not that sort of blog (yet). 

Here at "Susan Says..." we deal almost exclusively with dysfunction and hostility, proudly offering no solutions other than the creative use of profanity and unreasonable criticism for all. 

Today, I'm talking about civil and acceptable sleep behavior which, I fear, is often over-looked  in favor of racier avenues of thought..

I began thinking about this recently when I crept up to bed after Seth--who is up very early every morning--had already said goodnight and fallen asleep. 

Preparing to get into the bed, I took off my robe and tossing it onto what I hoped would be the edge of the dresser, accidentally knocked over several picture frames, a few bottles of assorted girlie stuff and a small lamp--all of which clattered about, rousing but not waking Seth from his slumber.

Instead of cutting my losses and slipping meekly under the covers, I straightened up the mess on the dresser--in the dark--and, seeking warmth in the chilly room, dove into bed jostling poor Seth who bounced skyward and, still without waking, mumbled somethig about Beyonce...or, was it Nancy Pelosi? I couldn't quite tell.

Ashamed, I vowed internally to be nice and quiet and not wake him up to chat as I occasionally do when the eleven o'clock news has been jarring and I need to talk it out. This is point one of your bed-iquette lesson:  Do not clatter, bounce or seek conversation.

Point two is that when the person with whom you share your mattress is emitting snores indistinguishable from an entire herd of terrified wildebeests upon realizing that they are about to be eaten by lions, do not smash bring your hand, palm down, on their face. Yes, it's very tempting but it can cause hard feelings that transcend the mystery of night and enter the arena of the following day. 

Instead, gently caress his/her shoulder and murmur into the sleeper's ear, "You are snoring like an entire herd of terrified wildebeests upon realizing that they are about to be eaten by lions. Please stop."  This, friends, is point two of lesson one: Be polite despite your impulses.

Part three and the last portion of your first day of Bed-iquette Class is simply to not become annoyed at your spouse's choice of sleep position....

If you walk into the bedroom after he or she has fallen asleep and the light is still on and their copy of "Great Speeches of the Twentieth Century" is left open on their stomach, just look away and turn off the light.

Do not be bothered that they sleep on their back, hands clasped behind their heads, a small smile upon their lips as they dream that they are Douglas MacArthur reassuring the Phillipines that he will, indeed, be back soon.

Simply get into bed and assume your own, much more normal, pose---that of a middle-aged, extremely short Scotty Pippin about to either sink a hook shot or hail a cab, depending on your frame of reference.
I'm sleeping right now--at the U.N.

Just calmly accept that your partner sleeps in the same position once favored by Muammar Qadaffi  who despite his current bravado now sleeps in the fetal position sucking his thumb....that is, if he sleeps at all these days. So, part three: Sleep and let sleep. What's it to you, anyway?

So, let's recap lesson one---no clattering and bouncing, face palming or resentment over the goddam arrogance of a subconsciously chosen position.

Stay tuned for Bed Ettiquette Part Deux in the coming days.

Until then, remember, although you don't really care about anyone else getting a good night's sleep, they feel the same exact way.
Oh, Seth, come back to bed.


  1. Doug can sleep through anything, the bastard. I on the other hand haven't had a good nights sleep since Clinton was in office.

    I may have the president wrong. I'm sleepy.

  2. Melatonin, Michele. It really, truly helps. 3 g.

  3. Okay... I was the first to reply to your blog, but after writing it all as I woke ,from my iphone, I had to select profile and didn't know what to I chose livefeed....then they asked me for my address which I didn't have and lost the whole darn I will

    First, you are a riot~!
    Jim and I have a rule... the first person up to bed gets to watch what they want on television that night. Very often Jim and I will be watching tv together downstairs on the main floor. Either he or I will fall asleep. If I fall asleep and wake before he does, I quietly grab my things and go upstairs and happilly watch whatever I want until he finally wakes up and left me downstairs to rot! LOL... Other nights you will catch me on the middle floor watching my tv and on my laptop. You won't hear Jim until he is up on the second set of stairs making a mad dash, yelling and laughing like an evil banshee saying... ha ha.... I beat you! I am surprised he has all this energy after just waking.. its hysterical. At this point I can just go up and argue the rule... or I can just simply wait for 15 minutes after which I hear the first snore and I get my way anyway. This is called my bed By the way.. he watches crime drama, news, insects or carnivore shows,scifi. Where are the happy peaceful shows at night? The ones that you can comfortably fall asleep to at night without having nightmares? After all it is bedtime. Love ya Suzie...
    Denise Farka

  4. Denise, thanks so much!! And your routine is similar to ours...good to know we're not the only ones!!! Everybody's got their own set of rules....

  5. Joe always goes to bed before I do, so I am constantly fumbling around in the dark. But I usually TRY to wake him with noise so that he will stop snoring. He too sounds like an entire herd of terrified wildebeests upon realizing that they are about to be eaten by lions.

  6. I would try to wake Seth but he leaves for work at 4 in the, my pity kicks in. I dooccasionally have no choice but to wake's that or bash his skull in with a pipe. So, I wake him instead.

  7. We are two small/short people. We have a very BIG bed. Rick sleeps like a starfish - snoring so loud, you can probably hear him from there. I sleep curled up, with one cat under my chin, the other behind my knees. 98% humidity and hot flashes do not make for a comfortable sleep... so I have black circles under my eyes and my temper is a tad shaky... I am also the one who hears (and investigates) the things that go bump in the night... Rick says he would do this, but only if those things are in the bedroom with us.... they are not - they are afraid the lions will get them too. People wonder why I drink... :-)

  8. PS - How do you get Buzzy to let you put stuff on him??? Mine would rip my arm off if I tried!

  9. Sleeps like a starfish is such a great visual! We should make Rick and Seth share a room.

    And Buzzy is a total mush bunny. But he will not allow me to put eyeglasses of any kind on him. He hates eyeglasses. I have others who might rip off my arm if I tried, though.