Dear Dick: Night Rider

By: Rick Andreoli
10.19.2010

Dear Dick,

Last night I tried to sleep-hump my boyfriend. He woke me up angrily because in my sleep I’d climbed on top of him and tried to do him. Now he’s mad at me because he thinks I was trying to do him a) without permission, and b) bareback.

I’d never do anything like this. How do I convince him I really was asleep?

Confused

Nick_leed_37_20061228_2076849887 Dear Confused,

All things are possible. People sleepwalk, -talk, -shop, -fight, and all sorts of other things. So of course they can sleep-screw. If your boyfriend can’t understand nocturnal weirdness then he doesn’t understand science. However, since this seems like the first time you've done this, it’s understandable that he was freaked out. It's also natural to wonder how much you were to blame for the situation.

Over the past few years there have been numerous accounts of people doing things in their sleep after taking some kind of prescription sleeping aid—or mixing alcohol and drugs along with this sleeping aid. Dear Dick knows one guy who emptied his entire dish cabinet into the dishwasher—stacking them in beyond capacity—and then forcing the washer to work by slamming in the door. This resulted in many broken plates and a flooded kitchen, which is weird and irritating but not as freaky as waking up to find your boyfriend trying to poke you Brokeback Mountain-style.

Were you partying before the incident? Were you drunk? Did you pop some pills to help you get to sleep? Because if any of those things were involved then you do have some explaining to do. And you better learn from this moment because it could have been a lot more serious and dangerous. Nick_leed_40_20061228_1289216537

But let's say you were innocently sleep-screwing like a person sleep-walks or talks. Your job now is to be extra wonderful to your boyfriend until he understands that you’d never be that callous or strange. You might try wearing underwear or pajamas so that if it happens again you’ll have some fabric slowing you up, which will give him enough time to slap you awake. But above all, you have to listen to his worries and concerns. Really hear how it made him feel and understand what he went through emotionally. Don't lose patience or blow him off—he was the victim here.

Show him you care by being attentive, and over time the healing will happen.

Dick_ProfilePic Dear Dick is neither a medical doctor nor a licensed psychiatrist. He is not a counselor, a priest, or a youth minister. He has not been evaluated by the FDA, the CDC, or the BBC, and his words are not intended to treat, diagnose or cure any condition. But he does like to offer advice when you write him. Leave a comment or send him an e-mail.

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