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is it okay: to share a bed platonically?


I currently reside in a room which is predominantly made up of my bed. The rest of the space is taken up with a desk, a bookshelf, and a window which overlooks an alley where people love to a) pee, or b) have drunken D and Ms, thinking that no one can hear them.

My house doesn’t have a guest bedroom, and if you want to sleep on the couch, you are definitely going to wake up with someone eating boiled eggs on you. So, if anyone is going to crash, it pretty much has to be in my room. In my bed. With me.

So that’s pretty awkward, and not just because I’m a sleep talker who tends to mumble things like “Sookeh is MAHN!” in my sleep. In our vocabulary, you (sadly) don’t “sex someone” or “engage in ALL the intercourse, long time.” Instead you say “they slept together” or “I found them in bed”. Literally sleeping with someone in a non sexual bed is hard to say, and at least language-wise, you end up in clonky run-on sentence territory. Mills and Boon it is not. It’s already complicated.

Is it OK to share your bed platonically? I think yes. Conditionally. In order to properly discuss this, I’m going to have to set up a lot of parameters, to the degree that it will almost be like writing out the instructions to my own board game. A board game called “Who is Allowed in My Bed!”, suitable for ages 16+.

People who get the green light include your partner, your family, your dog, etc. Not really a challenge. Then we get on to friends. The first time I shared a bed with a friend was in Year 6. I felt weird about it. Strange, as I’d been to sleepovers before, and I’d slept on floors in sleeping bags surrounded by other excitable seven year olds feeling rebellious about staying up until 10pm and revelling in the fact that we hadn’t brushed our teeth. However, elevate things a few feet off the floor with added mattress and blankets – suddenly it’s weird. Maybe it’s because bed is inherently a private place. You are at your most vulnerable, and it’s where your subconscious is closest to the surface. I got over it, and in the film version of this column there is a montage of me sleeping in many beds with many different (female) friends, talking about our impending marriages to the cast members of Lord of the Rings and bitching about homework.

Then I got male friends, and the weirdness returned in force. Some people believe that men and women can’t be friends without there being some degree of romantic feeling being involved. Crap. If this were true, my life would be 50% Cabaret, 40% Dawson’s Creek and 10% Mills and Boon. However, irrespective of this, the thought of sharing a bed with a male friend was still initially weird to me. The feeling faded – I fell asleep with a friend while watching a movie. We were under a sofa bed rather than on it, so the language hurdles weren’t an issue. Friends are friends. Their gender is irrelevant.

I think where it starts to stray in to amber territory is when you get on to people who could theoretically be your partner – where there are feelings involved. I don’t think it is OK to share a bed with someone who is interested in you if you don’t feel the same way. That’s not really platonic.

Essentially I think it should come down to this: if someone is going to be hurt by it, don’t. If it’s going to make things weird, don’t. Otherwise, there is nothing wrong with sharing a bed with a friend platonically. Unless they are going to judge you for commentating a Quidditch match in your sleep.

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5 thoughts on “is it okay: to share a bed platonically?

  1. Not to mention, er, there are, um, certain unavoidable morning phenomena that, hmmm, are associated with, harrumph, certain genders that, well, could cause embarassing, um, incidents for people still half-asleep.

  2. There will come a point in your life that you get over obsessing about something as clearly trivial as this. You will also get over that whole “can men and women be friends” question too.

    If you’re comfortable enough with a person that you can communicate clearly, set boundaries and both acknowledge consent, then sharing a bed is no fuss. Nobody wants to share a bed with a complete stranger or that annoying bloke who hangs out with your brother, but if it’s a friend or family member you are comfortable with, what’s the fuss?

    Two grown adults of whatever gender CAN share a bed platonically, and they can even wake up spooning the next morning with one or more of the people bearing a raging morning boner and the world doesn’t end. A simple roll over and “Oi, wake up, your morning stiffy is poking me dude.” is all it takes. Maybe a little good natured shit stirring. Grown adults know consent, boundaries and honesty. Or at least they should.

    Men have erections in the morning. Human beings naturally gravitate together in their sleep for warmth and comfort. Big grown up people can deal with it.

  3. I’m sleep with my ex-boyfriend, He wants to be friends, no sex involved. He his not interested in anyone. I’m ok with it, but it would be nice if we did have sex. I said to him one we will have sex, and he said we see each other are lot. So I feel he isn’t interested at the moment, but will be later. Its been two years and no sex. He was with someone else in 2012 and they broke up and then he rang me and we have been seeing each other.

  4. I don’t think that’s the good idea more especially when you’re in a relationship with the person you love m..I feel like you gonna disrespect him ….the other thing is that if your but friend wants you and you know he got feelings for you then you should expect some kind of uncomfortable behaviour from him ….

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