Last week I visited some family friends in their new home I was horrified to see that Grant slept on a mattress on the floor in the office. His makeshift ‘room’ had two doors, and was full of the detritus of office work, desk, shelves, papers. In order to get anything from the room, the family would walk over his mattress. Meanwhile Cate slept in the master bedroom with the dog. “He snores so loudly I can’t sleep, we just can’t share a room” she complains.
John Gottman, renowned expert on predicting whether a marriage will be successful, identifies turning away from your partner as one of the ‘four horseman of the marriage apocalypse’. Sleeping in separate beds is a physical expression of that emotional distance.
I too used to be a snorer. As I grew older it became more intense, going out partying with friends often meant crashing on a couch at a girlfriend’s house or staying wherever the party was. When I first stayed at a boyfriend’s house I was mortified to tell him “by the way, I snore”. I lived with my snoring for over fifteen years. Somehow in my head it was just something I ‘had’. Like some people are colour blind . Or tall. Or right handed.
- Get Professional Help
Snoring is a symptom that something is wrong. It is a health issue. There can be a number of causes including being overweight, poor fitness, smoking, excessive drinking, or a more sinister cause like sleep apnoea or structural issues. Go to see your health professional and find out what your snoring is telling you!
My miracle came when I began a program of chiropractic care- I discovered that I had almost no curve in my cervical spine, my neck was long and straight which meant my airway would simply flatten when I slept. After 3 months of treatment snoring became a rarity, and any relapse is a reminder to look to my health.
- Stop Being Such a Bitch
Your partner isn’t snoring on purpose, it is not a malicious act! Your partner needs your support to explore some different options to eliminate their snoring. This can sometimes be a frustrating or disheartening process. Don’t make them wrong. Behave the way you would if they were sick. Support them.
The Snorer also needs to show some compassion. Your partner is exhausted, frustrated, and feeling helpless. After night after night of interrupted sleep, their tolerance levels are low and they too need your patience
- Work Together
Team work is the key, and is the ONLY approach that will solve this problem on an emotional level. You are not on opposite sides, a snorer and a snoree, you are a couple. This means that you share the responsibility for working through life’s little obstacles together.
Treat this as an opportunity for you both to take a fresh look at your health!