When did couples start/stop sleeping in seperate beds?

I think it was in the 70s that married couples started sleeping in the same bed. However my husband and I were wondering when couples started sleeping in seperate beds?

Did cavemen sleep in seperate areas? Fastforward to the 1800s, did they sleep in seperate beds then?

In the movies that are portrayed in the 1800s I have only seen couples in one bed???

Thank you for any info you can provide.

16 Answers

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    You have to understand that censorship laws in the USA for movies and television did not allow for a man and woman to be portrayed in the same bed until the late 1960's (I think 1967) REAL men and women slept in the same bed for a long time. Maybe always. In fact it was TRADITIONAL for a man and woman to sleep together BEFORE being married, even in the 18th and 19th century. It was called "bundling" and they had all sorts of contraptions to prevent "sexual relations" but it was recommended they determine that they were compatible for sleeping. Popular sexual barriers were a "bundling bag" laced from the inside that the man could not remove (one presumes the woman COULD) or Bundling boards, a plank placed between the two people. Look at antique beds and you will find plenty in the size we call "Full size" (also called then a "double" bed) and Queen size. King size is rather a modern invention.

    If you are looking at older movies, the couple in the MOVIE will be in separate beds. REAL couples were sleeping together. I am 51, my parents ALWAYS shared a bed, so did my grandparents, born in 1896 and 1902.

    As an interesting aside, Jimmy and Rosalind Carter were the first President and First Lady that frequently slept in the same bed, though Rosalind kept her separate bedroom when he was up late so she wouldn't be disturbed. Ronald and Nancy Reagan were the first White House couple to abandon the "first Lady" suite and Nancy always slept in the same room with President Reagan. It was quite the talk of the town.

    Source(s): All us "baby boomers" were born between 1946 and 1960! Our parents were definitely sleeping together!
    • Gladrags814 years agoReport

      There was no censorship of television or movies. There was the Hays Code for movies, and unwritten standards for TV. But there were no laws. And the first married couple in bed together was Mary Kay and Johnny in 1947.

  • 3 years ago

    Twin Beds For Married Couples

  • Elsie
    Lv 6
    1 decade ago

    In the 1800s it really depended on your social status and how much money you had. People with a lot of money could afford a larger house, and therefore had a master bedroom suite with 2 rooms that adjoined one another. The wife had her own room, the husband had his own room, and there was a door connecting them for "romantic interludes". If you were a peasant, chances are you didn't even have bedrooms. Your living quarters were more than likely a 1 room cottage where everyone slept in the same room. People slept together out of necessity.

    I grew up in the 70s and my parents shared a bed until they got older and were having trouble sleeping. They got separate beds because my dad liked no covers and my mom was always freezing.

    My husband, who was my high school boyfriend, thought it was weird and always used to make fun of them. Well, we are now about the age they were at the time, and guess what? We're not only in separate beds, but separate bedROOMS! He snores like a freight train, and refuses to admit it's a problem. He wakes me up, and then I wake him up to get him to stop snoring. So about 8 months ago he moved into the guest room.

    As far as how things are portrayed in the movies and on TV, keep in mind that before the 70s there were censorship laws that prohibited TV and film makers from showing a couple in the same bed. I Love Lucy, Dick Van Dyke, Leave it to Beaver...all showed the adults in twin beds in the same room. This was NOT because this is the reality of the day, but because network censors didn't want to show an unrelated man and woman sharing a bed, even though they were protraying a married couple on the show.

    If you've seen movies set in the 1800s portraying couples in the same bed, it is either because that is what they need to do to make the movie work for their purposes, or it's a "peasant" couple who, in which case that is indeed the reality.

  • 3 years ago

    Couples Sleeping Together

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  • Q
    Lv 7
    1 decade ago

    Couples have slept in the same beds ever since there were beds to sleep in, and even before then. However, wealthy people in European society for the last 1000+ years may have slept in separate beds--it was their choice, and not uncommon. But, for example, if you read the Odyssey, composed around 2800 years ago, there's an important plot point that centers around Odysseus and his wife Penelope sharing the same bed. There are also references in the Bible to people sharing beds. But at the same time, men were sleeping around in those tales, and they'd sleep in many different beds. So there's always been sleeping together, and sleeping in separate beds.

  • Poppet
    Lv 7
    1 decade ago

    The slept in the same beds for as long as time has allowed couples to be together. The TV shows in the 50's show separate beds because of morality issues. Those actors were not married to each other and that was a big deal then.

  • 4 years ago

    couples startstop sleeping seperate beds

  • 4 years ago

    Kings and queens sleep in different rooms and they don't get divorced. (except in the case of Charles and Diana) Maybe in the case of the loud snoring spouse it might help or if there were some medical issues where the caretaker of the sick spouse needs a place to relax and get rest. Generally speaking though I would say NO, the divorce rate would not be lower by sleeping in separate beds. This is my final answer. :-)

    • Erik4 years agoReport

      Charles and Diana weren't king and queen, and Diana wouldn't have been queen Kings and queens most certainly do divorce, look no further than another British Royal: Henry VIII. And Elizabeth's sister, Anne, divorced, as did Andrew. Divorce is not uncommon among kings, queens or any royal.

  • 4 years ago

    My grandparents slept in separate beds. That's the only real life time I saw husband and wife doing that. The were born in the early 1900s. Don't know if that matters.

  • 1 decade ago

    Actually I was thinking the same thing because i was watching the twilight zone and they were in separate beds, they probably started that in the beginning of the 20th century. It may have been what they do on Tv because TV was not ready yet for people to sleep together

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