Strategies & Realities - Hearing Loss in Social Settings

Posted by Julie, Volunteer Mentor @julieo4, Dec 17, 2021

It's that time of year when families get together and, in many cases, even with COVID still in the air, friends get together too. Not that hearing loss is 'seasonal' It's for real year round! This morning I attended a brunch sponsored by an organization I belong to. Masks required; except when eating. Masks or not, social settings are challenging for people who don't hear well. I'd love to hear how others with hearing loss are coping. Will you share your thoughts and solutions?

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Smile, shut-up and don't interfere with the conversation by asking. Occasionally, I feign the reaction that is being shared by others. Enjoy the company.

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I try to position myself in the center of the group, so I can equally "hear" on both sides of the conversation. I'm not ashamed to say that I can hear everybody better if I'm in the middle. Also, I repeatedly ask for a repeat if I miss something in the communication. Don't be ashamed. It's best to be honest rather than miss out!

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If a seated affair, i try to avoid a table in the middle of the room. A smile and a nod helps,but really large gatherings and especially if extremely high ceilings have no satisfactory solution.

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@adamsrw592

Smile, shut-up and don't interfere with the conversation by asking. Occasionally, I feign the reaction that is being shared by others. Enjoy the company.

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@adamsrw592

Sometimes that’s what you have to do…depends on the people around you, the acoustics, the venue etc. Even if you have assisted technology it always doesn’t work well enough in certain situations. There are times, rather than get stressed out, I sit back and enjoy the company as you say.

FL Mary

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@decabea

If a seated affair, i try to avoid a table in the middle of the room. A smile and a nod helps,but really large gatherings and especially if extremely high ceilings have no satisfactory solution.

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@decabea

I agree and I am happy that others find ways to participate in conversations. Aside from all the strategies we use to optimize our hearing and our use of technologies, it depends on how severe one’s hearing loss is. I relax and accept what I cannot do, ask occasional questions when appropriate . I have had progressive hearing loss for over 40 years and know every “trick” in the book. I am not afraid to let anyone know of my hearing loss and, while most people are accommodating, I also don’t want to interject too often when others are so enjoying a lively good time. Do I miss those days? Sure I do. But I am so fortunate in that everyone wants me to be there anyway. I enjoy the vibe and am not feeling sorry for myself and am not stressing out. The phrase “ It is what it is “ is not meant to indicate a defeatist attitude. It’s reality for me and I know people sense that and ,yes, love me for that.

So cheers to everyone and where’s the next party? lol.

FL Mary

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Social gatherings are difficult for people with hearing loss. Even family gatherings can be stressful. How do you feel about this? I would love to know more about the coping strategies you use.

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@julieo4

Social gatherings are difficult for people with hearing loss. Even family gatherings can be stressful. How do you feel about this? I would love to know more about the coping strategies you use.

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Does anyone feel their hearing problems vary with the hunidity?

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@imallears
“It is what it is “ is not meant to indicate a defeatist attitude. It’s reality for me and I know people sense that and ,yes, love me for that.”
AMEN!!!
I've read some information about hearing aids making it easier to following group conversations. Any truth to that?
I don't have a hearing aid and I have trouble following conversations in a group situation. from what I read I thought maybe a hearing aid would solve that problem but I guess not.
Take care kids,
Jake

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I try to do the best that I can in group situations but like previous posters said it can just be easier to sit back and just enjoy being part of the group instead of trying to hear everything. I get sad that I can’t participate but I’ve learned to live with it.

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@coppermoon

Does anyone feel their hearing problems vary with the hunidity?

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I do know that my hearing fluctuates a bit. Some days I hear pretty decent (with the help of aids) and other days I struggle. I can mostly tell when it is because of ear wax buildup and when I need to clean my aids. I do know humidity and moisture can have an effect on hearing aids. I am assuming that is what you are talking about?

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@jakedduck1

@imallears
“It is what it is “ is not meant to indicate a defeatist attitude. It’s reality for me and I know people sense that and ,yes, love me for that.”
AMEN!!!
I've read some information about hearing aids making it easier to following group conversations. Any truth to that?
I don't have a hearing aid and I have trouble following conversations in a group situation. from what I read I thought maybe a hearing aid would solve that problem but I guess not.
Take care kids,
Jake

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Yes, I've seen ads indicating that they work and seen replays indicating they don't. Any actual uses out there?

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I got activated beginning of Dec and Audi had me using both from day 1 (advising sometimes to just use the CL to make it work harder). In groups it is still hard to hear everyone. But I've also learned to ask if others are having problems with the noise as well. In many cases it is the situation, not just me. Yesterday at a volleyball event everyone around me acknowledged that the noise was overwhelming and they were having problems hearing! I always tend to think it is just me lol. Same with TV – some movies are just bad with sound. So each day and each environment is different and I'm learning to accept that. I smile a lot and enjoy without stressing.

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