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I'm Deaf - What?

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I can still remember the very day I lost some of my hearing. It was at a Doobie Brothers concert in Boston in the late 70’s. My friend Jimmy and I sat down front between two enormous speakers and when the band performed “China Grove” it was so loud that I felt like I had ants crawling around inside my ears. For days after the show my balance was off and I felt like I was on a boat.

Fast forward to current times and I realize I’ve learned to lip read and I say, “What?” an awful lot.

I went for a hearing test and they put me in this little booth with headphones on. The audiologist told me to raise my right arm when I hear a beep. So I’m sitting there, and time is passing. I’m wondering when this guy is going to start with the beeps already. It turns out he started right away and I just didn’t hear it. Long story short - I have nerve-related hearing loss.

People don’t have a lot of patience with those of us whose hearing isn’t what it once was. At home when I say, “What?” to one of my mumbling family members they get so annoyed. “You’re deaf!” they’ll say. No kidding. If you know that why don’t you speak loud enough so that I can hear you?

If you have a mouth full of food I can’t hear you. If your hand is in front of your mouth I can’t hear you. If we’re at a place where there’s noise in the background I can’t hear you. Can you hear me?

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We value and respect our HERWriters' experiences, but everyone is different. Many of our writers are speaking from personal experience, and what's worked for them may not work for you. Their articles are not a substitute for medical advice, although we hope you can gain knowledge from their insight.

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