How Hearing Loss Affects Your Family
Rick has been an executive with hear.com since February 2019. He’s had severe hearing loss from a young age but only recently acted on it. This is his story.
Hi, I’m Rick, and I have hearing loss.
I’ve had trouble hearing since I was in the 3rd grade, but I didn’t get my first hearing aid until I was 34. I had to strain to hear what was being said in class, which became even harder when I got a job and had to attend meetings. I was pretty good at reading lips and situations, but it often left me feeling exhausted at the end of the day. Also, I can’t tell you how many times I’ve said something completely out of context to receive a confused look or simply be ignored. And if that wasn’t enough, going out to dinner at a busy restaurant or catching up with friends at a party was sometimes even worse.
After my second kid, I realized I needed hearing aids to be the best husband and father I could be. I didn’t want to miss out on my kids’ first words, their endless questions, their constant requests, or even their cries for help. After getting my hearing aid, I realized that my hearing loss already had some effects on my first daughter. She was practically yelling at me in order to communicate with me, and I could see how my hearing loss was stressful and difficult for her too. And now, whenever I’m not wearing my hearing aid, my wife and kids get incredibly annoyed and frustrated. They need to repeat themselves often and typically I still don’t know what they said. I can’t imagine what my family life would be like if I didn’t have a hearing aid.
In addition, I’ve recently learned there are many studies that link hearing loss to conditions like isolation, depression, dementia, and cognitive decline. As I’ve shared, hearing loss can make it harder to connect with people socially, especially in certain environments like church, meetings, restaurants, and parties. So to me, it’s common sense that untreated hearing loss could lead to feelings of isolation and depression. And as we get older, our hearing only gets worse, which makes it even harder to connect with people.
Let’s face it. Hearing loss sucks. Getting older sucks. But ignoring your hearing loss may cost you more in the long run in ways you can’t put a price on. I highly encourage you to reach out to my team at hear.com, so we can get you the help you need – if not for yourself – for your loved ones.