One in four married couples sleep separately to get better rest, a survey has found. And today, Rob Lowe admitted he is on board with that theory.
In an interview on The Ellen DeGeneres Show, the 54-year-old actor said his best nights of sleep are when he is on the road, as his wife of 27 years, Sheryl, plays games on her iPad into the early hours of the morning.
‘I sleep better on the road because I’m not with my wife,’ Lowe declared, to laughs.
‘People, it’s the truth. I love her enough to speak the truth.’
His words, unbeknownst to him, echo the National Sleep Foundation’s report, showing millions of other American couples feel the same way.
The report found pointed to a number of aggravating factors that will sound all too familiar to people in relationships.
Some partners can hog the duvet covers, or kick it around in the night.
Snoring, of course, doesn’t help the other person if they are a light sleeper.
And while couples tend to fall into sync with one another, that may not be enough to change that fact that one is an early bird and one is a nocturnal animal.
Even if couples are in sync, though, that closeness can make sleep complicated, since cuddling can make it harder to sleep.
While that may all ring bells for married readers, this field of research is not cut and dry.
Some research, such as a recent paper from the University of Pittsburgh, has found a myriad of benefits for couples who sleep in the same bed.
The Pittsburgh study found sleeping next to someone helps lower the stress hormone cortisol, perhaps because it encourages feelings of safety and security.
Prolonged periods of elevated cortisol have been linked with an increase in cytokines – proteins involved in inflammation that can trigger heart disease, depression and auto-immune disorders.
Lowe has been married to makeup artist Sheryl Berkoff, 56, for 27 years
Sleeping together has a protective effect by lowering the levels of these proteins, they concluded.
Lowe, however, falls firmly into the former camp.
When Ellen asked the actor whether his nights on the road, away from 56-year-old makeup artist Sheryl Berkoff, are tough, he gave an answer nobody was expecting.
But he explained: ‘What it is, is she’s obsessed with playing Family Feud ’til 5 and 6 in the morning on the iPad, and wakes me up, like, “Honey, honey! Quick! Name five foods that are gross!” I’m like, I just want to go to bed!’
‘So the answer is yes. My sleep on the road -‘ he kisses his fingers ‘- I love it!’