what else did you lose along with your hearing?

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Last year I gave a few presentations on hearing loss awareness, the content of this post is from one of the slides, which in turn came from other sources including personal communications, and the Say What Club.

The question was what else did you lose when you lost your hearing? Some answers are tangible such as income and employment, others are more abstract but no less important. The list doesn’t, can’t include everything, can’t cover everyone’s experiences, so please add yours in a comment.

  • Income
  • Work
  • Ease of communication
  • Social ease
  • Intimacy, pillow talk
  • Physical security
  • Music
  • Theatres
  • Telephone
  • Birdsong
  • Radio
  • Movies
  • Parties
  • Dancing
  • Jokes and laughter
  • Sharing
  • Independence
  • Trust

This quote is attributed to Helen Keller

“Hearing is the soul of knowledge and information of a high order. To be cut off from hearing is to be isolated indeed”

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8 responses »

  1. I have experienced effects in much, but not all, of the above.

    I miss the ease of communication the most. I use to be very social but have had to withdraw from some social activities (the noisier, larger sort). I just can’t follow what people are saying and I can’t be my spontaneous self if I can’t communicate. Sitting there in isolation in a crowded room is one of the worst feelings. I stick to small gatherings now.

    Languages/learning/self-confidence. Years ago I tried to learn a few languages but found them very difficult. Dutch, Welsh and Danish just sounded like one constant slur to me and I felt stupid because I couldn’t understand or pronounce correctly. I simply couldn’t learn!

    This was before I knew that I had a hearing loss. I had attributed my inability to learn on me being stupid or having some cognitive flaw rather than simply not being able to hear the full range of sound required to learn.

    That, and other examples of me thinking I was stupid rather that realizing I had a hearing problem, eroded my self-confidence severely. I am still recovering from that.

    Learning American Sign Language has been very good for me. Not only is it a completely fascinating language but I’m re-realizing that yes I can learn another language, I’m not a language idiot and actually I’m picking ASL up quite easily. (ego swells!)

    Great post, Mog… as always.

    – Marnie

  2. Marnie learning as a HOH person is near impossible in a conventional class, without support, I will blog on this another day methinks

  3. I can relate to most everything on the list. The one thing that really affected me though was the intimacy/pillow talk. I wrote a piece about that and originally named it “Pillow Talk” and then changed it to “Sounds of the Night.” It is posted on my blog and unfortunately, unless I wear my cochlear implants to bed, is still lost to me. Maybe just for fun, I will have to leave one on occasionally to get the “sounds of the night.”

  4. I only just discovered this blog! It’s really enlightening reading – I abuse my hearing plenty, probably because I get so much pleasure from it, and it’s shocking to think how much of my life is tied up in that sense. Looking forward to reading much, much more here.

  5. Sarah, I’m glad you found me. You must look after your hearing, what would you do without your music?? Read Glenice’s blog above for more on missing music.

    ….Earplugs, wear earplugs at concerts, take care with the volume.

  6. Some HOH and learning support comments would be very good, Mog. I am considering going back to uni and this is an issue I wonder about.

    Sarah, listen to Mog. Protect your hearing. I too abused my hearing; too many concerts (as close to the speakers as I could get), walkmans too loud, etc. I loved loud music, the louder, the better. I still do (in smaller, quieter doses) but it has affected my life in not very nice ways as well. You don’t want that.

    – Marnie

    Great new pic, Mog! 🙂

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