Sometimes hearing loss can feel like a no-win situation. If you don’t self-advocate, you will be left out of the conversation. But when you do, your self-advocacy behaviors are met with resistance, or worse — contempt. My recent post for HHTM discusses ways to overcome resistance to our advocacy efforts.
An excerpt from the article is below. Read the full post at FindHearing on HHTM.
How to Combat Resistance
Sometimes doing the right thing for ourselves or others is not popular, but even if others cannot see our self-advocacy for what it is — self preservation — we must persist. How do we continue to advocate for ourselves in the face of resistance? I share my suggestions below. Please add yours in the comments.
Share your struggles
Even if you have mentioned your hearing loss to people many times, they may not truly understand the struggles that you face. Hearing loss is difficult to understand unless you have experienced it. Tell them specifics about your hearing loss, including the frustration and sadness you feel when it makes it harder for you to do the things that are important to you. When you share your vulnerability, it is often met with empathy and a greater willingness to help.
When you ask someone to swap seats at a meeting or to provide captions on a webinar, sincerely thank them for their help. Giving them credit for the “good behavior” will incentivize them to assist you again in the future. This should be easy, since you probably are genuinely grateful for the assistance, especially when it is done with a smile. Pro tip: Make your requests with your own smile and a positive attitude. Both are hard to resist.