Do you get annoyed if someone yawns, chews with their mouth open, or clears their throat often? Could it be that you hate the whistling sound of a clogged nose, or feel irritation if someone is breathing heavily in your vicinity?
Then you probably belong to the approximately 20% of people in this world suffering from misophonia, which means “hatred of sound”.
The recently discovered phenomenon, also called select sound sensitivity syndrome, comprises a person who suffers strong emotional reactions when hearing “trigger sounds” – or even by thinking they will occur, as we recently reported.
A man from San Diego has taken the consequences of this phobia to a whole new level. Derrol Murphy, because of the disgust that some sounds cause him, has not talked to his family – in over 4 years.
Mainly, what sets off this 41-year-old man, is the noises people make while chewing with their mouths open. Misophonia makes him panic, furious and leaves him with no option but to leave to escape the torture.
Derrol Murphy has lived with the condition his whole life, thinking he was crazy, reports The Mirror.
“Little noises would make me fly into a rage”
He hasn’t been able to talk with his family in over 4 years. Mostly because of the condition. Instead, Derrol mostly spends time with boyfriend Kurt Vin, 41. They have been able to create a relationship around Derrol’s misophonia.
“People don’t understand it and I can’t explain it. It’s affected relationships, especially people I’ve been dating and family members, because you take it out on the people closest to you because you think they should understand,” Derrol told the Mirror.
“I’m not an aggressive person, noises just anger me. I’ve had to walk out on dates if they are chewing really loudly, my face gives it away – I pull a look of disgust I can’t hide,” he continued.
“The rustling of plastic bags drives me absolutely crazy, and I haven’t been to the movies for more than 10 years because people opening food bags is a very bad trigger,” Derrol added.
Created a “warning sign”
The couple has created a “warning sign” for Kurt to let Derrol know when he’s about to make a sound that will trigger his phobia, so he can cover his ears.
“When Kurt chews, his jaw clicks and when we first started dating, he was eating with his mouth open on the first date. I thought there was no way it was going to work, and had to tell him pretty quickly. Kurt will shout to cover my ears then I can brace myself. Misophonia contributed to the breakdown of my relationship with my ex, so it’s huge that Kurt is so understanding,” he continued.
“Most people say they understand but he just has to look at my face to know when a noise is getting to me,” Derrol concluded.
Derrol is a lucky man, finding such an understanding partner is difficult.
According to a 2014 Newcastle University study, 20% of the world’s population may suffer from this condition.
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