How Can I Sleep Without My Boyfriend?


I know how deathly quiet and unusual your home can suddenly feel when your boyfriend is away, making falling to sleep seem impossible. This post will explore effective tips on how to fall asleep and stay asleep despite the emptiness on your boyfriend’s side of the bed.

How Can I Sleep Without My Boyfriend? The first step is understanding why you feel you can’t sleep. Is it loneliness, lack of security or something else? Then try and address these reasons with aids and techniques to find comfort and peace, whilst always maintaining honest communication with your boyfriend.

Man and women black and white | How Can I Sleep Without My Boyfriend?

Sleeping without your boyfriend may not be the most ideal situation, but you are a strong, independent person who can still sleep soundly. And how do I know this, I have been in your shoes and I’m excited to show you a few tricks. 

Secrets to Sleeping Amazingly Well Without Your Boyfriend

You have finally got to a happy place where you can sleep blissfully next to another person and then… they go away.

It’s a real bummer.

It could be for a work trip, they have moved into a new job on the 3rd shift or they are on a “boys trip”….. you start to worry about for totally different reasons… but that’s an entirely different blog post.

Whatever the reason, re-learning to sleep by yourself can take some getting used to.

I remember when Dan, my now husband, started working the night shift. I often heard people say, “but you get the whole bed to yourself…” like this was something I had dreamed about.

I am sure you’ve heard this too.

These kinds of comments made me mad, but I eventually told myself to loosen up because they were just trying to help. And that is exactly what I hope to do here.

I want to give you some tips, advice and suggestions in order to sleep without your boyfriend. They worked for me and I think they can work for you too.

Here we go.

Weighted Blanket

Do you miss not being hugged in bed? 

The YnM Weighted BlanketOpens in a new tab. is crazy popular on Amazon with incredible reviews from people in the same position as yourself.

These blankets are very effective, particularly on a cold night or when you just need a good old squeeze in bed. See it on Amazon hereOpens in a new tab..

Man pillow

You may laugh but this Moonlight Slumber Comfort-U Total Body Support PillowOpens in a new tab. is almost (yes, use your imagination girls) the same as lying on your boyfriend’s chest at night. Check out the picture here on Amazon to see what I mean.

The second option here is a chest and arm pillow called the Boyfriend Pillow.Opens in a new tab. I personally prefer the above option, but this, almost novelty pillow, can be VERY effective to help you sleep. Check it out on Amazon hereOpens in a new tab..

If you’re feeling lonely, talk to your boyfriend about it and don’t suffer in silence. This simple conversation could give you the motivation to try something new or pursue a hobby you haven’t had time for, because you now have their support in understanding your current situation.

Bedtime Stories and Sleep Music

You have probably never thought about adult bedtime stories, right? That’s because you have never had a need for it most likely.

But what I love about bedtime stories is it fills the silence, distracts your thoughts and helps you relax. The choice of stories out there is unbelievable with a simple browse through the iTunes store or online.

In a recent post we published titled, Sleep Music Facts, Playlists and Songs for Insomnia Sufferers, we explore the most relaxing sleep music, the best adult bedtimes stories and podcasts to help you get those zzz’s. It’s at the bottom on this post and it’s worth having a look.

Women wearing headphones around neck and red lipstick | How Can I Sleep Without My Boyfriend?

Say Goodnight

This is obviously dependent on your own situation, but in most cases, there is an opportunity to make contact with each other and say goodnight.

I’m not talking about anything extravagant here, but even a simple text, video message or even an emoji can be incredibly powerful, often allowing you to sleep like a log.  

What about a goodnight text?
Asking for some kind of communication before you sleep doesn’t make you needy or high maintenance. If it gives you comfort and allows you to sleep, make it a thing. You never know, he could love it too.

Get a Fan and Turn Down the Thermostat

I know you want to make your house and particularly your bedroom warm as toast because you don’t have a second person to warm both the bed and your home…but this won’t help you sleep. 

The optimal temp your bedroom should be is between 60 and 67 degrees Fahrenheit according to sleep.org. This, my friends, makes a HUGE difference in the sleeping department.

I have personally found using a fan really helped here to not only provide a nice cool breeze, but it also filled the silence. Normally I get a combination of my partners breathing, noise from his random movements in bed or that other thing men tend to do a lot that leads to me being extremely agitated…

Insider Tip…
Buying a dog could also help ease anxiety as they generally bark or at least try to wake you when something is not quite right.

Get a Dog and Let Them Sleep in Bed With You (Just This Once!)

If you don’t have a fury mate, consider a trip to the local dog shelter.

A dog can help you sleep by keeping you warm at night, scare off any strangers and will respectively acknowledge your thoughts when you randomly start talking to yourself.

They are also great for a late-night walk if you can’t sleep.

If you need a little convincing on the benefits of dog ownership, this post we recently published will help.

If you are a shift working couple, or at least one of you works shift work, this popular post we wrote titled Owning a Dog as a Shift Worker: Clever Tips to Make It Work will help answer any questions you have.

pug sleeping in bed boyfriend away sleep | How Can I Sleep Without My Boyfriend?

Or buy a cat, rabbit or mouse for that matter!

Having an animal at home can help distract your potentially lonely thoughts and give you comfort when you do jump into bed.

You are not on your own when you have a pet – even a rabbit or a mouse can be very calming and help you relax.

Enjoy a bath

This may seem basic and pretty obvious, but there is actually a little more to it.

Having a long bath not only relaxes you and gives you some often, much needed “you time” but it can also help you sleep.

The science behind it, as I understand it is that your body naturally cools overnight to preserve energy and a bath helps speed up the process.

This “cooling” process starts about two hours before you go to sleep and peaks in “coldness” if you like around 4 am.

By having a bath before bed, this raises your body temperature by a few degrees which causes a bigger “drop” in temperature when you get out. And your body loves it! It helps to quickly relax your mind and body and put you in a nicer position to sleep.

Just on a side note, we also wrote a post about the beauty regimen for night shift workers which highlights the right temperature for a bath/shower to save the moisture in your skin. It’s worth checking out here.

Insider Tip…
Grab your partner’s pillow and spray it with their aftershave or cologne. The smell of them could be enough to ease anxiety and stress. Or, just wear one of their shirts for a similar effect.

Workout During the Day or Even Later at Night

Any time I skip the gym because I “don’t have time” or simply can’t be bothered, my sleep suffers.

Are you the same?

Making a real effort to workout during the day or even late at night, (yes, your sleep shouldn’t be affected), can be SO important on the sleeping front.

We recently wrote a post about working out after night shift which will be super useful even if you don’t work nights. Check it out here.

If you are a home gym type of girl, here are the best home gym equipment ideas. But if you just want to get it done and out-of-the-way, we recommend jump rope. Here is why in a recent post and the best types of ropes we love. 

Here’s a video to give you a bit of exercise motivation!

Invest in a White Noise Machine

While we are talking about filling the silence, a white noise machine can help even the most troubled sleeper get some zzz’s.

The sounds can be anything from a rushing waterfall, to wind blowing through the trees, to just static noise.

This “static” noise may not seem very comforting, but it can be incredibly powerful to help even tinnitus suffers from the ringing in their ears.

The Marpac Dohm, White noise machineOpens in a new tab. is very popular on Amazon and the reviews are ridiculously good. Check it out here.

Snuggle up to a Hot Water Bottle or Heat Pack

I know I mentioned earlier that your body cools overnight and this suggestion can seem a little off… but I get a huge amount of comfort from using a hot water bottle or heat pack when Dan is away. Even if these hot packs only stayed hot a few hours it was almost like Dan was in the bed with me which helped me relax.

This Attmu Classic Rubber Transparent Hot Water BottleOpens in a new tab. is pretty basic, but it’s super effective. See it hereOpens in a new tab. on Amazon.

The other option and the one I actually prefer using, is something like the amazing Victoria’s Lavender Heat Pack. They are longer in length and simply work better for me. See this microwavable heat pack hereOpens in a new tab. on Amazon. 

women in bed reading | How Can I Sleep Without My Boyfriend?
Getting stuck into a great book can also help you relax and fall to sleep easily

Blue Light Blocking Glasses

This may seem a little out of left field, but who is using their phone, TV or another device to stay occupied when their boyfriend is away or working a night shift?

It’s totally cool if you do, pretty much everyone does, but the blue light, that’s the artificial light your phone gives off, is telling your sleep hormones to stay awake. This makes falling to sleep a tough task when you are finally ready to call it a night.

Dan and I are pretty passionate about these glasses because they actually work and we are personally experiencing amazing results every day. 

We bought ours through the Swanwick Sleep website here and we encourage you to check it out. If you need more info about blue light and what these glasses are all about, these posts will help.

Dan wearing Aviator blue light blocking glasses from Swanwick Sleep – see website here.
Remember to keep your blue light blocking glasses on even when brushing your teeth! See what other Sleep aids are available from Swanwick Sleep – here

Insider Tip…
When choosing a movie to watch, stay away from the scary ones. A comedy or a love story normally has a predictable ending and that’s exactly what I need. No scary surprises thanks!

Sleep in the Middle of the Bed

I know this will be a little controversial, but hear me out for a second. If you are not “stuck” on which side of the bed you sleep on, consider spreading out while your boyfriend is away.

It will make the bed seem a heck of a lot smaller which can be good for you mentally because you are not constantly looking at the “empty” side.

Plus, you get to move around wherever you want!

Swap the Wine for Herbal Tea

When Dan worked night shift, I liked (ha, who am I kidding, “like”) to enjoy a glass or two of red wine in the evening.

I’m not really sure why I need it more during this time, but it could have something to do with watching numerous rom-com’s and having time for a long bath… See, the situation just calls for it!

But as delicious and warming as wine is, it would be better to indulge in a different kind of beverage for the sake of my sleep.

As can be seen in a recent post we wrote here about drinking alcohol before bed, the sleeping interruptions caused by alcohol are HUGE!

Why not make a special brew of either lemon and ginger or chamomile tea to help you sleep instead? Tea helps you calm and relax, which is probably what you need when alone of a night.

This Harney & Sons Chamomile Herbal TeaOpens in a new tab. is really lovely and worth having a browse hereOpens in a new tab. on Amazon.

[VIDEO] – 7 Sleep Tips for Night Shift Workers

Why Can’t I Sleep Without My Boyfriend?

We have talked about how to sleep when your body friend is away, but why can’t we sleep in the first place?

There could be a few reasons for this:

Security

Depending on where you live, you may feel physically scared in your own home. I really hate to write this, but it could be true for some for you.

Possible solutions:

Is there something physical about your home you can easily fix to put you at ease? For example, installing a security door, installing sturdy “fly wires” on every window and even getting a motion detector? This security system on Amazon is pretty impressive and should give you a piece of mind.

Lack of Conversation

You could be feeling lonely, which is distracting your thoughts and preventing you from sleeping.

Possible solution:

Before each of you go to sleep at night, send each other a message or text. I highlight this again because if one of you is going to be later home than expected, let the other person know.

Stop them just lying in bed thinking of the worst scenario. 

Change of Routine

Possible solution:

This may seem harsh but you need to start being comfortable in your own skin. Start to think about these nights alone as “you time”, focusing on all the good things you can enjoy, rather then what you are missing out on.

This setup is generally not forever so talk it through, be open with your partner (and even say you are scared and lonely if you are) and make a plan of attack together.

If things are STILL not right…

Ask yourself

Do I have any childhood memories or events which occurred in a past relationship, causing you ongoing anxiety and stress? If yes, the time has come to seek professional help.

These other posts may also help:

black and white. Girl sleeping in bed white sheets | How Can I Sleep Without My Boyfriend?
This is soon to be you

Summary: How Can I Sleep Without My Boyfriend?

Falling to sleep when your boyfriend or partner is away, messes with your routine making the whole process difficult… but not impossible.

I hope you got a few points of inspiration reading this post and can sleep soundly next time you are faced with this, less than ideal situation.

Thanks for reading our article about sleeping when your boyfriend is away. How do you sleep when you’re alone? Let us know in the comments below.

Cheers,

Emma signature | theothershift.com

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Emma @ The Other Shift

Hey there! I'm Emma Smith a passionate, Registered Nurse from Australia. Together with my husband Daniel, we run The Other Shift. Our sole aim is to help shift workers and those on unusual schedules find balance between work and life. I understand the challenges of fitting in exercise, maintaining relationships and getting enough quality sleep, but I'm excited to show you that it’s possible to do shift work and still thrive. Read more about us and our story here.

2 thoughts on “How Can I Sleep Without My Boyfriend?

  1. Thank you so much for this! My bf is away at the moment and I’m really lonely at night he calls me beforehand to say goodnight and sweet things which helps me a lot but after we hang up I get super upset. Gonna wear his pjs and hug a hot water bottle and drink some herbal tea

    1. Hi Lyd,
      We’re glad you’ve found a level of comfort that works for you. Your suggestions could be just the thing a fellow shift workers partner could be looking for!

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