Insight: Sleep Issues....zzzz....Or Not!

Living with snoring is not easy, sufferers have my sympathies. 

I am a sufferer of snoring...but it's not mine. It's still my problem but it's not my snoring. It belongs to the wonderful man who shares my bed. And it's not just snoring, it's also insomnia. I find the two are not mutually exclusive! For example, it usually goes something like this; Night 1 – insomnia; Night 2 – snoring; Night 3 to ? (depending on how lucky I am) - normal sleep, then it starts over again! So, it's Insomnia Snore Rest Repeat. I come off the worst in this scenario. For my husband, it's the frustration of not being able to sleep, followed the next night or the night after (depending on how lucky he is) by deep sleep. For me though, it's the frustration of my husband not being able to sleep (and indirectly mine) followed by my frustration of his snoring (I'm a good sleeper but a light one!). I always lose out on one more nights sleep than he does and I don't even have insomnia or snoring issues. How unfair is that?! I would get more sleep if I suffered insomnia (I'm just kidding insomniacs!). 

We'll head to bed, usually at the same time, read for a bit, have a cuddle, kiss goodnight and turn out the light, turning away from each other to go to sleep. On a good night, we both go to sleep. However, at the first twitch of the duvet, I start to panic...please no, not tonight! And then it's another twitch, followed by a leg kick or worse still a 180 degree turn so that I can feel and hear loud sighs. Eventually I will ask (like I don't already know) 'What's the matter?', 'I can't sleep!'. Oh great I'll think but not say (I'm not a total bitch). This can go on for a while. His cut off time staying in bed desperately trying to sleep is 1am (unless he knows it's going to be a lost cause in which case he'll get up right away). Insomnia sufferers get very frustrated when non insomnia sufferers suggest things to do to help them, so I gave up on this a long time ago. But as I don't suffer from insomnia, I will count sheep to help me nod off, which doesn't usually work because there is too much action under the covers (and nobody is having fun, if you know what I mean!). The only treatment (for me that is) is to remove the cause, not the symptom, so I'm quite pleased when 1am arrives and my husband throws back the covers and heads downstairs as I sympathetically stroke his back. It usually takes me about 10 minutes to fall asleep. Sweet dreams...zzzz....until (remember I said I was a light sleeper?!) the right foot lands on the first stair (we are currently renting while our house is being renovated and there is no carpet to be seen anywhere in this house). And up the stairs he comes. Now here is where you (medicinally) have to be economical with the truth i.e. pretend you are still asleep. If it has been a bit cold while he was up in the small hours, he might sidle up to me for some warmth and put an arm around me. If I really don't move, he will turn around to his own side and off to sleep I will drift again. But some nights I feel really guilty so I will roll over and cuddle him for 5 minutes or so. I'm not just being mean because if I wake up properly when he comes in a) he'll want a conversation and b) he'll then be fast asleep and I struggle to get back to sleep.

The following night comes the snoring. Not much reading this night because my husband (and quite often me) is very tired. So when the light goes out, the snoring is imminent (this luckily only happens following sleepless nights, or drunken nights). My total empathy to partners of constant snorers! So basically, on these nights, he gets a full nights sleep and I spend the night shifting his pillow or shaking the bed or slapping it with my hand, which works every time (for about 2 minutes). Oh dear god, what a relentless circle of events. We all have our crosses to bear! But I love him dearly (and I'm guessing I'm not quite perfect!).


I've just realised that I've given my husband all my secrets so he'll know what to look out for next time (unless of course I sign off as anonymous!).