Rude or just can’t hear?

Posted by joangela @joangela, Sep 28, 2019

How many of you can identify with this? Do the hearing people think you are just being rude by not openly talking to them or are they thinking that you possibly cannot hear them?
There are many times when I feel that they may be thinking the former. My entire family is from the hearing world, and actually for half my life I could hear good enough to say I am from the hearing world. I was extremely social and I actually had my own business where I did all the sales. I was good at it.
Now, I find myself having to retreat and not be part of the conversation, or very limited involvement. I find that people don’t talk to me very much, and direct their questions or comments to the person next to me.
How do you work through things like this and rise above hurt feelings. What are ways to make them not think you are just being rude? Do you just come out and tell them of your hearing loss?

@joyces

Although I tell people, including groups, that I have a new hearing problem (my "good" ear became bilateral w/Meniere's May 25), most people seemingly pay zero attention. At the beginning of a three-day retreat for river stewards, when each of us stood and introduced ourselves, I included the fact that I've lost much of the little hearing that I had and that I would try my best to follow conversations. Since it was in an outdoor setting with 30 or more people, it was often a challenge to figure out where I should be to have the best opportunity to hear and see what was being said. Discussions around the campfire were particularly challenging…impossible to speech read with a group sitting around a campfire. For the serious work sessions with a speaker/leader, I was almost always able to position myself directly across from him/her. A couple of times, I simply took a break and walked around to take a rest from listening. Still, not one single person made any attempt to speak directly to me during breaks, meals, etc. A very small percentage of people remember more than for a few minutes. I don't think it's that they don't care, telling them you can't hear just doesn't sink in.

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Perhaps you could use a speech to text app at a situation like the campfire meeting, and read later what was captured.

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@joyces

Although I tell people, including groups, that I have a new hearing problem (my "good" ear became bilateral w/Meniere's May 25), most people seemingly pay zero attention. At the beginning of a three-day retreat for river stewards, when each of us stood and introduced ourselves, I included the fact that I've lost much of the little hearing that I had and that I would try my best to follow conversations. Since it was in an outdoor setting with 30 or more people, it was often a challenge to figure out where I should be to have the best opportunity to hear and see what was being said. Discussions around the campfire were particularly challenging…impossible to speech read with a group sitting around a campfire. For the serious work sessions with a speaker/leader, I was almost always able to position myself directly across from him/her. A couple of times, I simply took a break and walked around to take a rest from listening. Still, not one single person made any attempt to speak directly to me during breaks, meals, etc. A very small percentage of people remember more than for a few minutes. I don't think it's that they don't care, telling them you can't hear just doesn't sink in.

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What Mayrjax said.

People really don't know what to do to help us unless we tell them.
I know my wife cares (most of the time) but she continues to speak from a different room or while running an appliance or there is other noise for years. As soon as I ask what she said she realizes what she did but didn't think of it at the time she spoke. It has only been 40 years so maybe she will eventually get it. When people have something to say it isn't their natural instinct to think of how a hearing impaired person will receive it. I have hard of hearing friends who have the same complaint about their spouses. This ain't nothin new!

So be your own good self advocate.

Liked by joangela

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@joyces

Although I tell people, including groups, that I have a new hearing problem (my "good" ear became bilateral w/Meniere's May 25), most people seemingly pay zero attention. At the beginning of a three-day retreat for river stewards, when each of us stood and introduced ourselves, I included the fact that I've lost much of the little hearing that I had and that I would try my best to follow conversations. Since it was in an outdoor setting with 30 or more people, it was often a challenge to figure out where I should be to have the best opportunity to hear and see what was being said. Discussions around the campfire were particularly challenging…impossible to speech read with a group sitting around a campfire. For the serious work sessions with a speaker/leader, I was almost always able to position myself directly across from him/her. A couple of times, I simply took a break and walked around to take a rest from listening. Still, not one single person made any attempt to speak directly to me during breaks, meals, etc. A very small percentage of people remember more than for a few minutes. I don't think it's that they don't care, telling them you can't hear just doesn't sink in.

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@joyces
Hi
Everything you said is so true and @maryjax pointed out that an important part of your explanation should be a sort lesson on how to accommodate you. If I was in your position at a 3 day retreat, I would have worn my button that says “PLEASE
I can hear you better when you FACE ME” Please is larger type on one line and FACE ME is larger type on the 3rd line. I have another one in black and white that says “Please face me I lip Read” I don’t like to use that one because I
probably only lip read 30%. But the buttons are visible reminders. They can be purchased online at several sites and you can pick what words are more comfortable for you. Mine were given to me by a friend. Keep the button with you and use it when you feel comfortable doing so. I have mine clipped onto the strap of my bag lately but am generally not in the type of setting where it is necessary. I am trying it out at an outdoor event this weekend and will let you know how it goes.

Regards from FL Mary

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@maryjax

Perhaps you could use a speech to text app at a situation like the campfire meeting, and read later what was captured.

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@maryjax
I use an app called LIVE TRANSCRIBE available only for android phones. But there is another one called OTTER for iPhones and Androids. Both have limitations of course and the major ones seem to be not being able to detect voices in a noisy setting or when a group is talking all at once. It’s worth a try, they are free and you can adjust the font size. What I Ike about Live Transcribe
Is that you do not need to hold the phones mic up to the speakers mouth. It picks up speech at a decent distance and works great when there is only one speaker. The better the mic on your phone, the better the results. You can save dialogue for 3 days.

FL Mary

Liked by joangela

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@imallears

@maryjax
I use an app called LIVE TRANSCRIBE available only for android phones. But there is another one called OTTER for iPhones and Androids. Both have limitations of course and the major ones seem to be not being able to detect voices in a noisy setting or when a group is talking all at once. It’s worth a try, they are free and you can adjust the font size. What I Ike about Live Transcribe
Is that you do not need to hold the phones mic up to the speakers mouth. It picks up speech at a decent distance and works great when there is only one speaker. The better the mic on your phone, the better the results. You can save dialogue for 3 days.

FL Mary

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Thanks for the great idea.

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@maryjax

Most people don’t know what they should do when told of a hearing loss. You probably do this, but saying what others in the group need to do to be sure you can hear is always helpful. We need to be very specific.

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I have been told to , "Stand in front of me so I can see your face so I can read your lips." or "Talk to me on my right side because I can't hear in my left ear." or "I didnt hear what you said, would you repeat that." I have never been offended, but rather pleased that the person was interested to communicate.
This could possibly be because I live we have a large deaf population and there is a cumminity awareness. I might imagint it is different in a community where hearing loss and deafness are not so common.

Liked by joangela

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