Ross Murray's Border Report
Ross Murray
is a freelance writer living in Stanstead, Quebec. You can reach him at
Posted 04.04.16
Stanstead, Quebec


The Sleep Contract

Whereas the parties referred to herein have shared a bed on a nocturnal basis for considerable time in accordance to accepted socio-marital norms and sleeping patterns, notwithstanding that as time passes, said sleeping patterns are becoming increasingly weird; and whereas the parties wish to maintain peaceful relations pursuant to the good governance of a decent night's sleep; the parties do willingly and without prejudice agree to the following terms and conditions:

    THE PARTIES. This agreement is made between SPOUSE A (hereinafter referred to as "Spouse A") and SPOUSE B (hereinafter referred to as "Spouse McAwesomeSauce").
  • a. Notwithstanding the above, Spouse A reserves the right to refer to SPOUSE B as "a bit of an ass."
  • b. Spouse McAwesomeSauce agrees to 1.a because Spouse McAwesomeSauce thought of coming up with a cool contract name, so whatever...


  • a. The territory of the sleeping area shall be divided evenly in half.
    Each party agrees to use reasonable restraint in order that encroachment onto the other party's half be limited to extremities (hands, arms, feet, legs, etc.) unless said extremities are: icy cold; all jaggedy; inexplicably reeking of cheese.
  • b. Body-to-body contact ("snuggling") is permitted based on: verbal agreement; kind of a vibe; the God-given right to steal another party's body heat.

  • i. Any activities beyond acceptable standards of snuggling are pursuant to a separate agreement and are not covered within the scope of this contract.

    In the event that one party vacates the bed, the remaining party is entitled to fully encroach the vacated territory ("sprawl"). The vacating party renounces all hold on the territory unless said party was just in the bathroom for two minutes, for crying out loud. A sprawl does not grant unlimited rights and privileges to the vacating party's territory, and definitely no drooling.


  • a. The parties hereby agree to breathe to the best of their abilities in a respectful and non-invasive manner, inasmuch as they are asleep and really can't be held accountable.
  • b. Should Party One turn over in a conscious or semi-conscious state to face Party Two and discover that Party Two is already facing Party One, Party One must turn his or her face away and not breathe into Party Two's face, even if Party Two is dead asleep, because, let's face it, Party One isn't going to want Party Two's death breath in his or her own face either.

  • i. Party One agrees not to sigh noisily or flounce dramatically so as to awaken Party Two, thereby forcing the potentiality of Party Two becoming the turner-over-er.
  • ii. Both parties agree not to pretend to be asleep in order to wait it out.

  • c. Should one party commence snoring, clicking, wheezing, etc., the other party reserves the right to nudge, poke and/or bludgeon with a pillow, as required, without reprisal.
  • d. Notwithstanding 3.c, the non-snoring party may opt not to nudge, etc. but instead inform the snoring party the following morning that he or she was snoring. The answer to "Why didn't you just wake me?" then becomes "Because 3.d," which is just as logical.

    PETS. Given the limited nature of the sleeping territory, the parties agree that the accommodation of pets must be achieved as respectfully and hairlessly as possible.

  • a. Spouse A agrees, inasmuch as possible, to confine the pet(s) to her allotted territory. (See 2.a) The addition of pet(s) does not entitle Spouse A to more territory, no matter how much she doesn't want to disturb them because look how cozy they are.
  • b. Should pet(s) encroach Spouse McAwesomeSauce's territory, he reserves the right to relocate them in a gentle, non-kicking manner.
  • c. Spouse McAwesomeSauce further agrees to let pet(s) sleep on Spouse A's head, even though that is clearly non-conducive to a good night's sleep and also bat crazy.
  • d. Should head-perched pet(s) commence snoring, clicking and/or wheezing, Spouse McAwesomeSauce reserves the right to poke, nudge or, if necessary, relocate pet(s);
  • e. Pursuant to the above, Spouse McAwesomeSauce cannot be held responsible for scratches inflicted to Spouse A's head during relocation.
  • f. Specific to the dog, the party who hears said dog scratching to go out at 5:00 a.m. must let said dog out.
  • g. As if the other party didn't hear said dog scratching.
  • h. How can the other party hear said scratching if the other party is asleep?
  • i. Maybe if the other party had said hearing checked...


  • a. The parties hereby agree:

  • i. To remember years ago when they were perfectly happy sleeping together in a tiny, single bed.
  • ii. To maybe not eat so much chocolate so close to bedtime.
  • iii. To trim those toenails.