Newlyweds have difficulty sleeping together

Dear Annie: My husband and I are newlyweds. The first year of marriage has been amazing, except for one thing. Our sleeping preferences are dramatically different. I enjoy a very cold room with a heavy plush comforter, whereas he would be happy sleeping in a warmer room with a lighter-weight blanket.

He complains constantly about our comforter’s being too hot. When I tell him to throw the blanket off, he complains it’s too cold in the room. The other night, he said he was so uncomfortable that he slept in the guest room with a small blanket and the temperature set to 75. In the morning, he crawled into bed and said he’d missed sleeping next to me. We love sleeping next to each other and cuddling. It’s just the actual falling and staying asleep part that is a struggle.

– Sleeping Beauty Needs Her Shut-eye

Dear Sleeping Beauty: Prince Charming needs his shut-eye, too. But rest easy; it’s common that married couples have to iron out their sleeping differences. There are plenty of options to make this work.

There are blankets specifically designed for couples in your situation, where half the blanket is heavy and the other half is light. You can find these for sale online, or if you’re at all crafty, you can stitch two different-weight blankets together yourself. If that’s not enough, consider buying two twin beds and pushing them together to make a king-size bed. That way, your bed will have your blanket and his will have his.

Science is on your side with the thermostat. Dr. Christopher Winter, medical director at Charlottesville Neurology and Sleep Medicine, says the ideal temperature at which to sleep is between 60 and 67 degrees Fahrenheit, as cooler body temperatures allow for deeper sleep. But seeing as your husband prefers it warmer, perhaps you could compromise at 70.

Congratulations on your first year of marriage. If this is the biggest problem in your relationship, you’re doing well.

Dear Annie: My spouse is the head of a company and receives gourmet food gifts from large corporations. What is the proper etiquette regarding these gifts? The gifts are addressed to my spouse. Are the gifts to be shared with everyone in the office? Are the gifts to be brought home? I don’t want to be rude.

– Unsure

Dear Unsure: These baskets are addressed to your husband, so if he’d like to take them home, that would be perfectly OK. But what would be even better is if he shared at least some of them with the office. Any goodwill this might establish between him and his employees would be priceless, and it would cost him nothing.

Dear Annie: I was disappointed when I read your answer to “Hearing Gibberish,” the gentleman who complained about people talking too fast for him to understand. That is a huge red flag that suggests he may be experiencing hearing loss. If not diagnosed and treated for hearing loss, he might withdraw, quit trying to communicate and fail to respond to loved ones. These behaviors have frequently been interpreted as dementia. If hearing loss is caught soon enough and treated, the social damage can be corrected and the world won’t lose this guy. There are tools to help with this, such as closed captioning, assistive listening devices, hearing aids and captioned telephones (CapTel). Your state may provide a captioned phone free or at reduced cost. For more information about hearing loss, contact the Hearing Loss Association of America (www.hearingloss.org).

– Hearing Again

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