I was asked to translate the phrase "I wanna wake up where you are". One of the options that came up was


which turned out to be not so pleasant to a native Chinese ear. A better option,


was slightly better.

My question is, in which context would I want to use 睡醒? And does it express the opposite notion if 睡觉?

As an appendix question, I would be happy to know why do people say "睡了“ when deciding to to to sleep and not ”睡觉了“。 What function does the "觉” provide, conceptually, in this phrase?

Thank you for your thoughts.


1 Answer 1


醒: wake

醒来: wake up

睡醒: wake from sleep

睡觉: (go) sleep

I am a native Chinese speaker, IMO 我想在你的身边睡醒 and 我想在你的身边醒来 or 我想在你身边醒来 (no的) sound equally fine. 我想在你的身边醒来 is slightly more spoken expression, while 我想在你的身边睡醒 is slightly more written.

睡醒 and 睡觉 do have opposite meanings, but a better antonym for 睡醒 is 睡着,which means "fall asleep".

睡了 and 睡觉了 both sound Ok to me to express "go to sleep".

in 睡觉, 睡 is actually the verb "sleep" while 觉 is the noun "sleep". I think 睡觉 become mainstream just because nowadays the chinese spoken language like to use phrases with two phonemes.

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