Wish to connect with people - Severe Hearing Loss

Tell us your wish, tell us your obstacle, and we'll try to come up with some useful suggestions to help you get into action toward your dream.

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Re: Wish to connect with people - Severe Hearing Loss

Postby SquarePeg » Fri Nov 11, 2016 11:58 am

So sorry that you had that experience. BTW, my wife and I mute commercials all the time. I'd've done the same thing because I find commercials to be too distracting, and I would've been unable to pick out one conversation from many.

Perhaps the hostess could've helped you turn on the closed caption feature after she lowered the volume.
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Re: Wish to connect with people - Severe Hearing Loss

Postby Elaine Glimme » Fri Nov 11, 2016 11:38 pm

I get the feeling from your last posts that you need to be alone for a while. But I just want to remind you that you said with four people in the room, it was a challenge, but you did okay.

In the case of the last party, the people were clueless about what you were experiencing.
More hugs coming your way.
And some peace and quiet.
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Re: Wish to connect with people - Severe Hearing Loss

Postby inspiresuccess » Sat Nov 12, 2016 8:18 pm

What I want is to connect with people.

What I need is a break from the shock of how bad my hearing loss is.

EG and LX, Thanks for sharing the gadget and the paper/pen idea. It's percolated and I came up with an alternative. I just got my first smart phone. I don't know how to use it. But I will learn how to text. If I were with my friend at a cafe and I wasn't understanding, we could have our phones in front of us and she could text the word or sentence. I hope I learn how to use the phone soon. I tend to put that kind of thing off.
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Re: Wish to connect with people - Severe Hearing Loss

Postby Elaine Glimme » Mon Nov 14, 2016 10:42 am

And everyone else is texting instead of talking these days.
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Re: Wish to connect with people - Severe Hearing Loss

Postby inspiresuccess » Mon Nov 14, 2016 11:33 am

Elaine Glimme wrote:And everyone else is texting instead of talking these days.

I know. I love being face to face with people.

My last cafe experience with my friend ... walking to the cafe, I point out trees and the colors of the flowering bushes; I pick up leaves and point out the shape and hue. I love looking at architectural designs and the displays in the little stores along the way.

While sitting at the cafe, I point out a 1930's beautifully restored car driving by; a man who looks like he just stepped out of a biblical painting -- shepherds garb, blonde shoulder-length dreadlocks, carrying a small harp; young women wearing the newest fashions with style and flair, knowing they're putting on a beautiful fashion show for all to see.

I'm an observer and sharer of what I observe. I point out the visual wonders wherever I go, even if it's a 2 block walk in a small town and sitting at a cafe chatting with a friend. I'm like a walking docent tour guide everywhere I go. I love being outside and being able to see the world through the eyes of an artist/designer. As a musician, sitting at the cafe with music in the background, I say, "Shhh.....I think it's Billie Holiday". I listen for a minute and say, "Yes, it's Billie...", and then we resume talking.

A small cafe outing for me is a lovely visual, aural experience. Sharing it with a friend is a joy for me. I don't enjoy doing it alone. If I could cafe with a friend AND...be able to understand what she is saying, it would be such a big, win/win for me. I hope the texting will help me understand.

Doesn't it sound like it would be fun to go cafe-ing with me? I have only one friend who can only get together every month or two. Everyone I meet, I suggest cafes and no one wants to.

I live in the wrong area. I used to be able to drive to several cities close to me, where people are more interested in things I am. After an auto accident a few years ago, I'm still too scared to drive very far. I'm working on it, but my progress is so slow, it's maddening. I hope someday I'll find cafe people again. I desperately need it.
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Re: Wish to connect with people - Severe Hearing Loss

Postby Elaine Glimme » Wed Nov 16, 2016 11:26 am

If you lived closer, I would go cafe-ing with you. But I HATE driving into the city.

I tried to get my mother in law to post something here. I thought it would make her happy to be able to tell someone about her experience with hearing loss, but she didn't. She said she didn't have anything to tell you. She said she can only understand people one-on-one. With group conversations, sometimes it's just not worth the trouble. I asked her where she learned to read lips, and she said she just picked it up. She said it's frustrating, but she's made her peace with it. In groups, I try to make the effort to include her. She says most people don't. And these are nice people, not horrible self-absorbed people. One-on-one, everyone makes the effort to be understood.

I think it's interesting, that you, and Lynx and a lot of our friends, especially the younger ones, immediately think of texting and computers and i-phones to communicate with someone who's hard of hearing. My mother in law and I like pen and paper.

Wish I had something else to add here.

More hugs.
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Re: Wish to connect with people - Severe Hearing Loss

Postby inspiresuccess » Wed Nov 16, 2016 11:46 am

I'm going to be trying some HLAA things soon. A class in Oakland that will teach me how to use a closed captioning program on my iPhone. I just got the iPhone and as usual, haven't figured out how to use it. The class is on November 29th so I'll be motivated to learn how to use it. The program is called Hamilton CapTel. I'll report in here after I done it. It's free because it's a pilot program. They're also going to be doing a pilot program for lip reading. I think it's going to be in Contra Costa County where I live, (Concord) but I'm not sure yet. I asked about cost and I don't think they've decided yet. I said I live on Social Security and she said she'd "see what I can do". We'll see. So far, this HLAA group seems to be something that's going to help.

I haven't tried any of the chat groups I listed. Too overwhelmed with all this stuff. One step at a time.

I've decided to buy a TV on Monday. I've saved up enough money and it's time to face it and get it over with. I hate buying stuff like that alone, but Best Buy sales people are really nice. I'm going to say the sound system part is really important for me because listening to music is mostly what I'm going to be doing. I might have to buy extra speakers or something like that. It seems like in addition to the TV I'll have to buy other things as well -- a good head set for hearing, etc. I have DVDs I'd like to watch and I assume I'd have to buy a DVD player as well. But I don't have to buy everything at once. Start with the TV and get information about the additional purchases sometime in the future. I know there are sales on Black Friday, but emotionally I couldn't handle the crowds.

Elaine, thanks for asking your MIL about her hearing issues. I know that without training, lip reading uses only about 10% of a person's ability. I've learned on my own a little bit but it's slow. Thanks for supporting me on this thread. I really appreciate it.

Elaine, please read my post on the Steppers thread because I'm going to be deleting it soon.
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Re: Wish to connect with people - Severe Hearing Loss

Postby inspiresuccess » Wed Nov 16, 2016 5:31 pm

I just got back from my audiologist. I realized last time that I have to be more assertive. At that time, I insisted on getting my hearing tested again. It's been 2 years. He did 3 additional tests and made adjustments. We'll see if it helps.

He gave me one really important piece of information:

"It's not just about how well your ears work, it's how the information from your ears is interpreted by your brain."

My hearing problem is not volume; it's comprehension -- understanding WHAT people are saying.

I asked if there were some brain exercises I could do. He said yes. He mentioned one he's heard about but doesn't know anything about it. And he he suggested googling for info.

His job is to give people the best hearing aids he can. He doesn't know anything about lip reading classes, etc. I understand that.

When I got home and checked my emails there was one from HLAA about "how to get the best from your audiologist"! I think that organization is going to be a real Godsend for me.

I did ask my audiologist a lot more questions. I'll share more later.
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Re: Wish to connect with people - Severe Hearing Loss

Postby inspiresuccess » Wed Nov 16, 2016 5:41 pm

In order to give people an idea of what HLAA offers, here's the list of meeting topics my local chapter held in 2016:



Jan—CTAP
February— Ask the Audiologist
March—Deliberate Dialogues & Rich Relationships
April—UCSF Report on Research, re music, hearing loss & implants
May—Beyond Hearing Aids, Hearing in Difficult Situations
September—& Ava, Communications Beyond Barriers
October— Clear Captions
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Re: Wish to connect with people - Severe Hearing Loss

Postby Elaine Glimme » Wed Nov 16, 2016 10:17 pm

Yes, about the problem being comprehension and not hearing. By the way, We have a cap tel phone that writes out what the person talking to you is saying. It's not 100%, but it helped.
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Re: Wish to connect with people - Severe Hearing Loss

Postby inspiresuccess » Tue Nov 22, 2016 2:03 pm

My audiologist mentioned this. He doesn't have any first hand experience with it. It's something he's heard of. He mentioned it when we were talking about the fact that hearing is not the only problem; it's also how the brain processes the info it receives from the ears.

I haven't read the website yet. It costs $80. I didn't see any money back guarantee, but I just did a quick scan of the site.

Here's the basics of what the home page says:

LACE® Auditory Training programs retrain the brain to comprehend speech up to 40% better in difficult listening situations such as:

Noisy restaurants
Rapid speakers
Competing speakers

Just as physical therapy can help rebuild muscles and adjust movements to compensate for physical weakness or injury, LACE can help you develop skills and learn strategies for dealing with situations when hearing is inadequate.

https://www.neurotone.com/lace-interact ... ng-program

One of the things I've noticed a lot is I keep asking people to speak more slowly. When people speak fast, I think my brain isn't able to process the info fast enough. I'm feeling slightly more hopeful because my audiologist told me about the brain's part in all this. I know my hearing isn't going to improve, but if I can get my brain to work better, it might help.
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Re: Wish to connect with people - Severe Hearing Loss

Postby inspiresuccess » Tue Nov 22, 2016 2:48 pm

Learned a new term:

Auditory Fatigue

I've been trying to explain this to people and no one understands. The stress of ATTEMPTING TO HEAR is exhausting.

I used to talk to a friend on the phone. I no longer do, because I was so stressed and exhausted afterwards from straining to hear, I had to go to bed for an hour or two to recover. I finally told her I can't talk on the phone anymore.
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Re: Wish to connect with people - Severe Hearing Loss

Postby inspiresuccess » Tue Nov 22, 2016 5:39 pm

I'm applying for this pilot lip reading class in my area. They only have 10 people signed up so far and they need 30 in order to get it approved. I have to brainstorm to think of ways I can let people know about this. It's for the Spring 2017 semester so they'd have to sign up soon. I think it will be held at Diablo Valley College in Pleasant Hill, CA. I really hope we can get enough people to sign up.
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Re: Wish to connect with people - Severe Hearing Loss

Postby Elaine Glimme » Wed Nov 23, 2016 9:59 am

I hope the lip reading program gets enough people. it should really help you.

My mother in law can understand most things if she's looking at the face of the person talking to her. And she just picked it up. I assumed she had taken a course somewhere. And for her as well as for you, it's understanding the words, loud noises she hears just fine. And a room full of people talking and making a lot of noise is just frustrating and annoying.

I hope it's okay that I talk about my mother in law so much. It's just that she's going through the same frustration you are, and she has picked up some good coping skills. The last time she saw the audiologist, about three years ago, he said that she'd gotten to the point where hearing aids weren't going to be much help. She did get some help from her hearing aids back then, but now she doesn't even bother with them. My point - learn to read lips. It works.
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Re: Wish to connect with people - Severe Hearing Loss

Postby inspiresuccess » Wed Nov 23, 2016 10:30 am

Elaine Glimme wrote:I hope it's okay that I talk about my mother in law so much. It's just that she's going through the same frustration you are, and she has picked up some good coping skills.


I'm glad to hear about your mother in law because it helps me to know about other people going through this and their experiences with it. It makes me feel like I'm engaged in a conversation here, not just talking to myself. So, thank you for your posts. :D
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