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linkeellis (@linkeellis)

Hearing loss: How do you identify yourself to others?

Hearing Loss | Last Active: May 11, 2019 | Replies (77)

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@imallears

@suzyd
Hi, You said a mouthful! I wear 2 Phonak BTES, profound loss. Back when I started to lose my hearing in my mid thirties and was still working, so many people thought I didnt’t get it. This was way before I started to advocate for myself. Now than I am approaching 78 (really?) I have found it so easy to be upfront with everyone I come across and I have found that if I say “I read lips, I need to look at you” or something to that effect, it seems to get their attention .
And yes, we can only do one on one conversations and that stinks in so many ways. Music is horrible also. I have tried many assisted devices and none really help that much. I have a wonderful Audi who will let me try anything without any upfront payment.

If I am approaching a new group of people, I announce upfront, with a smile of course, that I have a severe hearing loss and what I need to do. I am not shy about telling people what I need from them but it takes a person time to get use to doing that and not feel any shame or shyness. As for that person who yelled at you..well I thoroughly enjoy putting rude ill mannered people down.
You’ll know what to say next time. I like to have a sense of humor about it and sometimes an attitude is necessary. It’s not my fault. If they are interested, I can give them a brief understanding of my hearing loss…if not…oh well. I have also found younger people
really receptive because, chances are, they have a relative who has hearing loss.

We’re all so tired at the end of the day. I think we are better drivers…always looking…and maybe more observant…although sometimes not.

Someone made a comment about the culturally deaf community and I have met a few really really rude Deaf ladies who were so annoyed at my futile attempt at signing. One turned her back to me. I know basic phrases but most of the HOH people at the HHLA meetings I go to speak and sign at the same time. I’m not around them enough to practice.

My 2 cents
Regards from Mary

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Replies to "@suzyd Hi, You said a mouthful! I wear 2 Phonak BTES, profound loss. Back when I..."

Yes, Mary. We inhabit a land existing between the Hearing Community and in the Deaf Community. I constantly advocate for being part of the diverse layers of HoH community and we are a large community, at that.
I agree that the younger folks are more open just as they ten to be more open to nonbinary gender identification, cultural/racial diversity… I love strong women who aren't afraid to state their reality!
Once, after my disclosure of my HoH status and how I would best understand, a woman who had been speaking away asked me what I thought about what she was talking about (without any respect for the parameters I'd stated for my hearing/understanding) and I said, "Oh! I had no idea you wanted me to know what you were talking about, you didn't look toward me, you talked spitfire fast and you didn't enunciate. Surely you don't want my opinion at all…." Open mouthed, she said how sorry she was that I was HoH. I laughed so hard at that… and said, "Really? if you thought what you were saying was important or worthy, you would have helped me understand. I am sorry that you don't think enough of what you were saying, to make it clear!"

@imallears, which Assisted Listening Devices have you tried?

I'm completely deaf in my right ear, and 30% deaf (loss is mostly in high tones, no hearing above about 3500 Hz) in my left. I've been using a Bellman Domino Pro device for 6 years. It has a transmitter unit that I can put on the other side of a table I'm at (after telling people what it is and asking permission), and a receiver device that receives sound from the transmitter and also has its own mikes. I can aim the receiver unit at people who are talking. With it, I feel that 98% of the time, I can hear as well as if I had no loss at all, using an earphone connected to the Domino Pro.

It's a godsend when I'm at a noisy restaurant, and when I'm driving with my wife, with my deaf ear toward her. I can hear people much further away than I can with my hearing aids (a dual bi-cros unit). For most daily use, I use my hearing aids (and have for 50 years, since I was 18), but I use the Domino Pro for meetings, restaurants, speeches and other events where there's no mike, and other things outside of my house.

Do you (or anyone else reading this message) have experience with other (less capable) Bellman products, or with the Comfort Audio Duett, Conversor Pro, Williams Sound, or other Assisted Listening Device? I studied up on them when I got my Domino Pro. It was clearly the best one, but it's also the most expensive, by far. The Conversor Pro seemed second best, but I don't have any experience with it.

I'd appreciate any information you (or anyone else) may have. I've promised to send information for a friend, whose 95-year-old mother might benefit from it.

I like to introduce myself with a little humor “I have a severe hearing loss, so I may reply to a comment said earlier or just add something out of no where “.
I also have a magnetic badge that has my name and “ I have a hearing loss, please speak directly to me so I can read your lips”. I find I wear that a lot especially when shopping, doctor appointments ?

I find it’s easier to explain my loss immediately so others will understand. I like to remind myself, to be grateful for what I can hear!

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