Why is it socially acceptable to shame people about their hearing loss? Part 2

By Dr. Anne Simon

May 10, 2019

I’m hearing more stories of shaming those with hearing loss. Untreated hearing loss is difficult to live with. When you have normal hearing, it can be hard to relate with the struggle of not being able to hear.

But, there is another perspective to this topic that warrants attention.

As human beings, we thrive in our connection with others. The primary way we feel that connection is when we experience being heard. When our loved ones, friends, co-workers do not hear us, we are left with a loss of connection.

This can be painful. How painful depends on the value of the relationship to you. When you are not heard by a loved one who has hearing loss, it can leave you feeling isolated, frustrated, and resigned. This mirrors what happens for those with untreated hearing loss. The difference is in how common the experience is. If you have normal hearing, and are not heard, it’s a moment of disconnect. If you have untreated hearing loss, this disconnect is a constant struggle.

Most of us have a hard-of-hearing loved one. Most of us have, on some level, experienced the frustration of not being heard by them. I assert that’s the reason why it is still socially acceptable to shame those with hearing loss. Not being heard is a pain that we can all relate to.

So, when you have that moment when you are not heard by a dear one with hearing loss, don’t take it personally. Communication is a more effortful exercise when you have hearing loss.

I hope that you find this helpful. We can all be more understanding to those who don’t hear well. Hearing loss or normal hearing: we are all trying to find a way to meet our needs.

If you or a loved one find conversation difficult, an audiologic evaluation is the best, next step. You have five senses that you experience life through. Why not experience life to the fullest? Call my office today to schedule your consultation! 208-746-7022.

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