Q: My wife goes to bed before me. Sometimes when I come to bed, she has taken my pillow and is sleeping on it. Problem is, this is the only pillow I can fall asleep on. I have tried the old slide-from-under-her-head manoeuvre, which never ends well. What options do I have?
P.B., Cherrybrook, NSW
A: Once you find a perfect pillow, that’s true love. That’s a till-death-do-us-part relationship – until you die, or the pillow gets chucked in the washing machine on a hot cycle and comes out a rancid, wet sack of clumpy porridge.
Sure, you’ll have other pillow flings in your life: an overstuffed hotel pillow that you kicked out of bed at four in the morning and swapped for a damp, rolled-up hotel towel. An Airbnb memory-foam pillow that you completely forgot about the next day. But the perfect pillow is your one and only. It’s always there to give you support, to listen to your dreams, to soak up your secretions so that eventually it becomes more “you” than “pillow”.
Actually, maybe this is the best way to deter a pillow-thieving bed partner: just stop washing your pillowcase, stop airing out your pillow, let it absorb all your juices until it has turned a repulsively mottled shade of droolage-brown.
Otherwise, all I can suggest is going the full Pillow Psychopath and locking away your beloved pillow in a cupboard until bedtime, with a potpourri bag for nourishment and a tiny door-gap for breathing.
Or work on your slide-from-under-your-wife’s-head manoeuvre: it should be done quickly and confidently, like whipping out a tablecloth from under heavy crockery. Remember: it’s all about the wrist-snap; you don’t want it to be about the neck-snap. Though I suppose that could be a solution, too.