I am what they call severely hearing impaired.. I also have tinnitus which is constant noise in my ears.. Sometimes they can be so loud that if I rated them out of 10 on my worse days.. It would be a 8/9 out of 10.. Liken it to living beside a rushing water fall that constantly flows and trying to hear people or life going on around you over that kind of sound..
My hearing started to deteriorate around 20 years old.. My father is hearing impaired wearing hearing aids.. so was his mother, her sisters, my fathers brother… and my sister is too.. though not as bad as I am.. I don’t wear hearing aids because although they would make noises louder it doesn’t make them clear so I just learn to accept my disability. I have to use captions whenever I watch tv or movies.. I cannot hear the dialogue at all. Use text on my phones, as I cannot hear normal phone calls.
My hearing gradually declined over the years.. now I cannot hear a normal conversation without difficulty. I lip read and that helps also my family speak a bit louder.. I have to see a person’s face so I need to be close to someone, being extra close is a bit intimidating to others I notice some back away.. In shops I can be in my own little world.. don’t always hear staff members and because deafness is not something a person can tell about you.. I am sure there are many out there I have had contact with who think I’m rude.. Its best to speak up and tell people at the start so they know.. but sometimes that doesn’t help as people speak at the same level and I still struggle.. Most apologise when they know… but its still difficult..
I speak too loud sigh which I hate. My kids are great at helping me when I go out.. I do have to rely on other people when in public. I do tend though to stay home a lot, Internet makes communication easier.
Unfortunately deafness means I rely on others.. and they are inconvenienced.. That is probably the hardest thing of all to cope with.. knowing others have to work at communicating with me.. Repeating things when I don’t hear.. it can be so hard sometimes you need to carry paper and a pen or type a small message on my iPhone if I am not able to understand.
It has isolated me. I don’t go to church any more either.. Its too depressing to sit through services only understanding what is displayed on the overhead. I would sit in the service and get bored and use my phone and get dirty looks..
I will add a you tube video if anyone is interested which explains well what it is like being hearing impaired..
I try not to focus on this… I can talk ok.. walk… have good vision.. am generally well in body so how can I complain.. I get paid a disability pension here in Australia.. So I can stay home and take care of my kids.