Recently I heard about a new trend in high-end residential building development in which His and Hers Master Suites are the new status symbol. I must first say that though this may be a new trend, I don't imagine it is very widespread. I can't see it catching on like wildfire as I think many people would be uncomfortable if others knew they had a separate bedroom from their spouse. Would people talk? Would people think their relationship is a bad one or somehow fraudulent?
The idea behind this trend is that each member of a couple often has a different sleep schedule or pattern. Some like to read for an hour, while others may like to watch television. The idea of His and Hers Master Suites seems to make sense in some ways.
Imagine if you were single, had a fairly spacious house, and a had your best friend move in. Would you share a bed? Most likely, you would not. When you think about it this way, why would you necessarily share a bed with your spouse? I think this question underscores how many of the things we do simply because, as Carly Simon sang in the 1970's, 'That's the Way I Always Heard It Should Be.'
This is important because one of the most consistent patterns I see in couples who seek out therapy is codependence- wanting to be close but ultimately feeling claustrophobic in the relationship. People feel claustrophobic in a relationship because they feel there are unwritten rules that betray what each wants himself or herself. In other words, people feel they often have to go along with things to keep the peace even though they do not necessarily want to do so.
Ask yourself how you would feel if you had separate bedrooms from your spouse. Could you still feel emotionally close with this separation, or do you need to have the person with you in the bed? If so, be sure to ask yourself why. Remember that true intimacy in a relationship should allow for a certain healthy separateness.