I Guess I Have a Thing for Darth Vader

As our population ages, scientists and medical professionals constantly conduct research focused on the health problems that arise later in life.  This growing body of information has Baby Boomers better prepared for their golden years than any previous generation.  However, one serious condition that has received less than its share of attention is SHS—Snoring Husband Syndrome.  The sleeping partners who have to endure SHS often think they would do anything to make it stop, but that may not be entirely true.

According to the independent research I have conducted (in our office), SHS affects close to 100% of the male population over the age of 50.  However, the effects of SHS are more devastating for family members, particularly spouses, than the millions of men who suffer from the condition.  Men generally report bruising of the ribs and legs along with alienation of affection as the most common symptoms of SHS.  Sleep deprivation, bruised knuckles, sore feet, and latent aggression are the most common complaints from women.

John is not a stereotypical snorer.  He doesn’t rattle the windows, and his nasal reverberations don’t sound like a small engine running in the next room.  However, what he lacks in volume, he more than makes up for with variety.  At times he will exhibit what I call “the classic,” a rumble in the back of his throat caused by the vibration of soft tissue when he inhales.  Other times the noise is a simple puff of air that sounds like the word, “Poo.”  Another variation sounds like I am sleeping next to Darth Vader.  Regardless of the “tune” that he plays, most nights I end up sleep deprived.

On one particularly trying evening, I awakened John several times hoping a different sleeping position would stop the noise.  As I waited in the darkness for the cacophony to start anew, it became apparent that not only was John NOT snoring, I couldn’t hear any breathing at all.  Minutes passed, and suddenly I was convinced he had somehow expired beside me.  As I shook his arm, he grumbled back to life and demanded to know what he had done this time.  I said, “I couldn’t hear you breathing.  I thought you had died.”  To which he replied, “There’s just no way to make you happy.”

As I contemplated his remark the next day, I realized that things are never as bad as they seem.  While his snoring is aggravating and I would love if it stopped, I will miss it like crazy when it’s gone.

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