Rare disorder means that this mom 'falls asleep' every time she orgasms
There are some moments in where you really don't want to fall asleep. Take driving for example, it's not a good idea to fall asleep at the wheel, is it? Or while watching Fight Club, you really, really don't want to fall asleep during Fight Club (imagine missing the twist?). Another incident where you don't want to fall asleep is during sex. Lets face it, if you're getting down and dirty with someone and they drift off into a deep slumber, you're going to feel pretty insecure about your performance. However, sadly for one woman, this is exactly what happens every time she orgasms.
A young mom from Nottingham, UK, "falls asleep" every time that she has an orgasm due to a rare neurological disorder. Jessica Southall, 20, is a mother of one who suffers from narcolepsy with cataplexy. Jessica's condition means that whenever she experiences a strong emotion or sensation her muscles react, causing her to look like she has fallen asleep. According to Jessica, the "sleep attacks" have happened when she was in labour, hears a joke or gets really upset. However, more embarrassingly for her, she also claims that the reaction often happens when she orgasms, and says that it made for an interesting conversation with her partner, Junior Santiago, when they first started dating.
"I just had to explain to [Junior] that it’s only going to happen when he makes me feel at my very best," she said. "But it’s not ideal."
Jessica says that she experienced her first episode of cataplexy when she was just 16-years-old and claims that she now has to sleep for up to 13 hours a day due to chronic tiredness.
According to the young mother, she is left feeling exhausted by the condition, which is caused by the brain being unable to regulate sleeping and waking patterns normally. While the orgasm side of things has made people laugh, the condition also has some less amusing side effects, with vivid nightmares and hallucinations also being part of the condition. However, Jessica says that while she may look like she is asleep during the attacks, she is actually "fully awake".
"One minute I'll be there in stitches laughing my head off, not able to stop and the next moment my head is on my chest or I'm lying on the floor."
"I can’t respond or snap out of it until the emotion stops. To any other person it looks like I’ve fallen asleep."
"It might sound funny - and I do have to try and be light-hearted about it - but it's horrible really."
Her family initially thought it was down to stress and a change of routine after the summer holidays, but Jessica was worried as soon as it began to happen.
Jessica says that the attacks used to be a lot worse, claiming that initially she would collapse everytime she laughed.
"I was falling asleep on the bus on the way to school, in my lessons, on the way home, as soon as I'd had my dinner - and sometimes in the middle of my dinner," she said. "At the weekend I wasn't waking up until 3pm and then I'd go downstairs and fall asleep on the sofa. "I think people thought I was being lazy, but I knew it wasn't right."
"At my worst I was collapsing every time I laughed," Jessica said.
After months of tests, Jessica was finally diagnosed with narcolepsy and cataplexy and she says that she is now beginning to take back control of her body.