I Love My New Captioned Phone

Like most people with hearing loss, I regularly have trouble hearing on the phone. I make religious use of my amplified headset and the volume control on my speakerphone, but sometimes, it is not enough. It can be embarrassing to keep asking someone to repeat themselves, and dangerous if important information is being conveyed. I remember one phone call with an editor where I kept repeating what I thought I had heard to keep the conversation moving forward. It was very stressful and difficult for both of us.

After that call, I decided to try a captioned phone to see what benefits it would bring. It has only been a few weeks, but I am very pleased with it.

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How My Children Taught Me To Accept My Hearing Loss

I never expected my children to be my greatest teachers, but seeing myself reflected in their eyes showed me the path I needed to take to overcome my struggles with hearing loss.

When I became a parent I was still in denial about my hearing loss, even though it had started almost 10 years prior. My father also had hearing loss, but never discussed it. I remember him actively hiding it from friends and even family when I was a child. We all knew — it is a very hard thing to hide — but it was never discussed. An unmentionable.

My family was not supportive of him. My mother would whisper comments to my sister and me behind his back. When we asked her about it she would reply, “Don’t worry, he can’t hear us.” This behavior taught me that hearing loss was something shameful and that my father should not expect any help from the family to help him cope. I look back on our behavior with regret.

So when I began having trouble hearing as an adult, I was horrified, and ashamed. I hid it the best I could, following in my father’s footsteps. I rarely disclosed it, and refused to wear my hearing aids any more than absolutely necessary.

But then I had children.

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When You Discover The Miracle Of A Hearing Loop

I recommend that everyone get a t-coil in their hearing aid. The incremental cost is usually small, but the expanded functionality is huge. A t-coil or telecoil transmits the sound within any looped area directly to your hearing aids, cutting out background and other noises, letting you focus on what you want to hear. This is incredibly helpful at theater performances, in meetings, or when talking to your taxi driver. Of course the t-coil only works in a space that has a hearing loop installed.

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Can An App Help You Find A Quiet Place To Eat?

Eating out has become a lot more challenging, as restaurant design and booming music have given many restaurants a club-like atmosphere. Sounds from clattering dishes, voices raised in conversation and the ever-present soundtrack rocket around the room, bouncing from one hard surface to another. It’s almost enough to inspire me to cook for myself! Well, let’s not go that far.

What if there was a way to find a quiet restaurant, or even a coffee shop for a quick meeting with a business colleague or for socializing with a friend? And what if you could do this right on your smartphone? Well, now you can.

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Please Ask Me About My Hearing Loss

When I was growing up, my father never wanted to discuss his hearing loss. He was embarrassed and ashamed of not hearing. It was an unmentionable topic in my family which just perpetuated the stigma. When I emerged from my hearing loss closet almost 10 years ago, I wanted to do everything I could to crush that stigma. I sought to make hearing loss a normal topic of conversation, like someone’s back problems or new glasses. I try to do this each week on my blog.

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