We recently asked the We’re All Ears Facebook community to answer this question…
What is the number one thing you wish your family and friends understood about having hearing loss?
They came up with some absolutely fantastic answers. Unfortunately we couldn’t fit them all here as there were quite a few, but here is a selection of our favourite answers! If you have a friend or family member with hearing loss, this is definitely worth a read.
1. Just because I’m deaf, it doesn’t make me stupid. – Sandy H.
2. That the person who has hearing loss is not ignorant or ignoring anybody. – Sandy F.
3. Please look at me when talking, don’t expect me to hear when you are yelling from next room, and most importantly when I don’t hear what you are saying don’t say it ‘doesn’t matter’ and walk away – it does matter to me. – Jeanette B.
4. Show more empathy and talk to my face and don’t exclude me from conversations. – Bev S.
5. Please speak slowly and clearly. – John Paulette D.
6. It’s so isolating. People laugh at a joke, but I don’t know what was said. I like to laugh. Yes I have the best hearing aids money can buy…unfortunately though my eardrums are often so full of liquid I just can’t hear. It’s so exhausting to try and follow conversations. – Bev P.
7. That patience and understanding are required as hearing impaired people get tired and we need others to meet us at least halfway and sometimes we just need peace and quiet with no demands to communicate. – Judi G.
8. To look at me when talking to me! – Colin M.
9. Actually face me to talk… and don’t even bother if background noise is present! – Susan E
10. That telling someone “I think you need to turn that thing up” is so very rude. Not my fault if they talk to me from another room. – Gaynor B.M.
11. That it’s just as frustrating for me as it is for them. – Philippa C.
12. I’m not pretending when I say I can’t understand what has been said. – Rex W.P.
13. To stand still and look at me while talking, and to understand there are various reasons I need the TV volume slightly higher than normal!!! Like the news, straining to hear something important!! – Steve A.
14. Don’t try and talk to me from another room! – John O.
15. To get your attention before talking to you. Being patient. – Heather M.
16. That when you lose your hearing you still have your intelligence and sense of humour. – Nancye T.
17. That I didn’t lose my mental capacity along with my hearing and how alone you feel when not being able to hear and participate in social conversation. – Jean M.
18. To know that it is even more frustrating not being able to hear what is being said, that not being heard. – Mark C.
Now it’s your turn! What do you wish your family and friends understood about living with hearing loss? Tell us in the comments section below.