LONDON — Moving in with your significant other is a big step, but if you worried you’re not ready to spend even more time together, one new study may bring you a sigh of relief. According to a survey of 2,000 British adults who live with their romantic partners, outside of sleeping, the average couple spends just four hours per day in the same room with each other.
A few reasons for this, according to the survey results, were conflicting work hours, differing interests, and different bedtimes.
On average, British couples in the survey spend seven-and-a-half hours together in their house, but only 57% of this time is spent in the same room. Differing work hours and interests are the top reasons why couples are often apart. In all, 45% blame different interests from their partner, while 31% cite work hours. Thirty percent of couples have different bedtimes and therefore rarely go to bed at the same time.
“It’s interesting to see just how much – or how little – time is spent with a partner at home together,” notes Natalie Wathan a spokeswoman for home heating company Drayton, which sponsored the survey, in statement. “The study shows that most couples have conflicting schedules to each other and as such use the rooms in their home in different ways and times.”
The study found that when couples are in the same room together, they don’t always get along. Among common quibbles, a third of couples regularly fight over the room temperature, while a quarter disagree over the temperature of the bedroom specifically. Meanwhile, one in five couples argue about the brightness of the lights, and 10% have spats over who sits where on the sofa.
Temperature control is a common trip point for many, with more than half of those surveyed indicating their partner has different ideas of how hot or cold their home should be. Interestingly, 31% of women in the survey have final veto power over the temperature, compared to just 22% of men.
The findings make it no surprise that 20% of couples are in mutual agreement with their partner that they should spend time in separate rooms. Still, 10% admit they feel like they’re more like “passing ships in the night.” Interestingly, 17% of British couples surveyed said they don’t even sleep in the same bedroom. The primary reason for this is their partners snoring, with 42% citing snoring as the reason.
Perhaps this next statistic will rise after folks read the results of the survey: over a quarter of the respondents actively try to set aside time to spend with their significant other when they are home. The most common time this occurs is on a weekday evening. The most popular activities British couples did when in the same room included watching television, eating, and tidying up their living spaces.
The survey was conducted by OnePoll.