How a CPAP Machine Became my Marriage Therapist

Happy couple after treating sleep disorders

My husband and I have been happily together for 14 years.  But about 6 years ago, I began to resent him.  I resented his ability to sleep right through his insanely loud snoring, while I was tossing and turning, shoving ear plugs in that only partially blocked the chainsaw-sound.  I was miserable!  I was sleep-deprived!  How could he!  But then he started doing something else.  He stopped breathing.  My wifey intuition knew it was happening and I would jostle him awake or tell him to turn on his side or tell him "you're choking, honey", all night long.  I felt like a broken record.  Little did I realize, I wasn't the one suffering as badly. 

Man snoring, man with sleep apnea, wife annoyed by snoring

I finally convinced him to talk to his doctor about it.  I'd never heard of sleep apnea or PAP therapy and neither of us had put two and two together on why he felt so tired and short-fused during the day or why, at 39 years old he was falling asleep in his chair at night like an old man.  His doctor sent him to a sleep center, or as I like to call it, the "marriage therapy center". 


polysomnography monitoring to diagnose sleep disorders like sleep apnea

But this wasn't just about our marriage.  This was definitely about his health.  After his initial polysomnogram, (where they monitored his breathing, heart rate and brain waves overnight) he was diagnosed with Obstructive Sleep Apnea.  He had what they call a "split night" overnight study; he had so many apneas (which literally means "stop breathing"), they connected him to a CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure) machine halfway through the night to see if that would start to resolve them.  It did.  And soon our new marriage therapist, I mean, CPAP machine arrived in our bedroom to provide my husband with the ability to breathe at night and me the peaceful night's sleep that I had been resenting for a year.  

treating sleep apnea saved my relationship

Has it been easy?  No!  He wears a small mask at night and the first few weeks were not easy to adjust to.  Has it been worth it?  Absolutely 100%.  My hubby lost weight in the first 3 months using the CPAP (it's amazing what breathing oxygen does for your metabolism) and he has regained his awesome sense of humor and loving demeanor.  Which is probably a good thing with a family of all daughters.

As for him and I?  Well, CPAP might as well stand for continuous positive awesome partners.  We both sleep like big fat babies.  Like they always say, happy wife, happy life.  Right, honey?