10/03/2013 11:39 am ET | Updated Feb 02, 2016

Sleeping With the Frenemy


I am a total insomniac, which doesn't surprise me at all, because even during my waking daylight hours, I am not a relaxed person. I am extremely affected by my environment; if there's cheap cologne within a five-mile radius, I will smell it, and if there's a screeching Jesus freak hollering about the Bible and/or other angry works of fiction, it's usually happening within spitting distance of me (and believe me, I do -- spit, that is). I loathe being in close proximity to people, except for the total strangers whom I accidentally rub up against on a crowded subway car. I live in New York City, the very crotch of chaos, noise and anxiety, so is it any wonder that at the end of the day, I tumble into bed a writhing mass of trembling limbs and frayed nerves?

If falling asleep alone is difficult for me, catching some Zs next to another human being is damn near impossible. I've largely managed to avoid that hazardous proposition over the years, primarily because I average one six-week relationship per decade, and also because most people probably don't ask me to stay over because they suspect that I will rob them during the night (and honestly, I just can't rule that out). The number of men I have actually slept next to is far exceeded by the number of men who have taken out restraining orders against me.

There are several reasons that the thought of slipping into slumber avec l'amoureux makes me fidget. The first (and most overwhelming) reason is that when I wake up in the morning, honeychild, I am butt-ass ugly. Really. I don't even look at myself till I've been upright for an hour, and even then it can be dicey. I surely don't want someone else seeing me in that state, face all puffy, red bags under my eyes, expression not yet fixed into a frozen masked of bemused indifference. Oh, no, no. If there's ever a fire in my apartment building during the night, just let me die; I don't want a bunch of hunky firefighters seeing me resembling the elephant man's distant Jewish cousin.

I always sleep poorly and wake up several times during the night. Then I do weird things, like eating frozen Pepperidge Farm cake with my fingers over the kitchen sink. Nobody needs to see that. And forget about having a cozy morning together, making omelettes and reading The New York Times in bed. I am a stone-cold sociopath until I've had my coffee, and then I'm just merely unpleasant.

If you're at a dude's place late at night and he puts on his pajamas while asking which side of the bed you prefer, run, bitch, run! Potential hazards include being subjected to evil morning breath; receiving oral servicing while you're asleep, generating the nightmare that it's Rush Limbaugh blowing you; finding out that he's through your wallet while you were passed out and discovered your real age. Oh, the humanity! Then of course there is the dreaded "walk of shame." Who among us has not skulked out of a stranger's lair into the cruel morning light sporting last night's crumpled clothing, chapped lips, and a used condom unknowingly stuck to his back?

Yes, I've had some bad experiences with sleepovers that have soured me on the whole idea. I've had guys wake me from a dead sleep and toss me out into the cold pre-dawn darkness because their lovers were supposedly about to come home (lovers I'd never heard about before, mind you). I had one guy who, after driving me to his place way out on Long Island and having his filthy way with me, generously offered to let me sleep in his car. Gee, how romantic. One night my transgender friend Pearlie Mae Cornbread was crashing at my place, and we were sharing my bed. Her nighttime attire consisted of a huge T-shirt and nothing from the waist down. I awoke with my knee lodged firmly between her fat, naked ass cheeks. She was also lactating hormone-induced titty milk on my sheets. It wasn't a romantic or sexual sleepover, obviously, but I think the story bears repeating all the same. I mean, come on, y'all!

It's not that I've never slumbered next to a man before and liked it; when you've had as many men as I've had -- at least a dozen or so -- statistically it's gonna happen, honey. There is something undeniably nice about the experience, I'll admit: the warmth of his body next to you; his slow, deep breaths; one meaty arm carelessly flung across your throat. That's my favorite part, that arm: I like to know that there's the potential for my man to accidentally suffocate me while I sleep. What can I say? I like big, dumb, passive-aggressive guys.

Maybe I should give it another shot. I've had invitations to "spend the night" from really cute, sweet men, but I always decline with some wack excuse: "I have an early appointment with my shrink"; "I was planning to spend the night organizing my collection of Iroquois corn husk dolls"; "I have syphilis." Screw it. I will master my fear of co-slumbering. Yes, America, I may even spoon! All I have to do is wear cute underwear, fill up on Ambien and Xanax, and hopefully slip into an eight-hour coma.

Of course, I'll have to sneak out of bed at dawn, wash the cake frosting off my face, quietly make myself look humanesque, and creep back under the covers before Sleeping Booty awakens. Trust me, that's really for the best. My unedited face in all that harsh morning light? Baby, there's a reason that most heart attacks happen in the A.M.

Sweet dreams!