Mar­ried to a snorer

Daily Freeman (Kingston, NY) - - YOUR DAILY BREAK - An­nie Lane

Be­fore mar­riage, I slept well ev­ery night. Since I’ve been mar­ried and my hus­band and I shared a home to­gether for the first time, my sleep has suf­fered. The main cul­prit is my hus­band’s snor­ing.

When he snores at night, I wake up so of­ten to poke him or tell him to change po­si­tions that we both wake up tired and re­sent­ful in the morn­ing. At times, he has slept on the couch, but his own sleep suf­fered dur­ing those times, and I felt guilty. When we sleep to­gether, I have to take sleep­ing pills just to be able to fall back to sleep. I spent last night on the couch my­self just so I could catch some un­in­ter­rupted sleep.

The prob­lem is that he gets sen­si­tive about it when I bring it up, and he also is sad when I leave the room to go sleep else­where. It feels as if I have to ei­ther keep my mouth shut and suf­fer to avoid of­fend­ing him or do what I need to do to sleep but risk hav­ing a sad hus­band on my hands. I just want us to have a “nor­mal” mar­riage bed.

What do I do? I am tired all of the time.

— Los­ing Sleep

You’re not alone. Thir­teen per­cent of cou­ples who live to­gether sleep in sep­a­rate beds ev­ery night, and half of them do so be­cause of snor­ing. I as­sume, see­ing as you’re writ­ing to me, that your hus­band has tried all the usual tips — breath­ing strips, prop­ping his up­per body and head up with pil­lows, sleep­ing on his side, etc. If that’s the case, his doc­tor should re­fer him to a sleep spe­cial­ist. He may suf­fer from sleep ap­nea or another sleep dis­or­der.

What is go­ing on with cus­tomer ser­vice? Ev­ery time I go to my bank, which is not a lot, the teller wants to know the de­tails of how I spent my week­end. Or if I cash a check, one teller asks me what I am go­ing to spend the money on, say­ing, “Hope­fully some­thing good.” Now when I give them a check to be cashed, I stand 2 feet away from the win­dow so the teller can’t ask me any ques­tions. When I got my oil changed at my car deal­er­ship, the strange man work­ing there asked me what my plans for the day were. Are they kid­ding? This is so in­tru­sive! First, they don’t re­ally care, and sec­ond, it’s none of their busi­ness. How can I pos­si­bly tell them this in a not-so-smart-alecky way? — J.W.

Yes, you are right that not ev­ery­one who asks how you’re do­ing or what your plans are ac­tu­ally cares what the an­swer is. But this type of per­son cares about at least try­ing to reach out and make you feel ap­pre­ci­ated. In a world that is in­creas­ingly im­per­sonal and dig­i­tal, there’s a lot to be said for good old-fash­ioned face-to-face con­tact.

By no means are you ob­li­gated to have a heart-to-heart with ev­ery me­chanic or bank teller, though. If you keep your replies short and sweet, they’ll get the mes­sage.

I as­sume, see­ing as you’re writ­ing to me, that your hus­band has tried all the usual tips — breath­ing strips, prop­ping his up­per body and head up with pil­lows, sleep­ing on his side, etc. If that’s the case, his doc­tor should re­fer him to a sleep spe­cial­ist.

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