Convincing spouse to get hearing aid - Talk About Marriage
Physical & Mental Health Issues Marriage and relationships are difficult by themselves, but coping with physical or mental health problems can make things even more difficult.

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post #1 of 30 (permalink) Old 07-24-2016, 08:58 PM Thread Starter
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Convincing spouse to get hearing aid

As if I have all my problems solved, seems wifey needs a hearing aid. One ear is at 55℅ the other maybe 80℅. Between that and her lack of concentration after asking a question it's nearly impossible to have a conversation...

Any suggestions? She's 57 and in top health.

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post #2 of 30 (permalink) Old 07-24-2016, 09:13 PM
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Re: Convincing spouse to get hearing aid

Did you say something?

Seriously, would it really matter if she heard you? From what you've said she is more hard of listening than hard of hearing...

Always remember the LD motto: "Sex isn't important!!!"
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post #3 of 30 (permalink) Old 07-24-2016, 10:25 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Convincing spouse to get hearing aid

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Did you say something?

Seriously, would it really matter if she heard you? From what you've said she is more hard of listening than hard of hearing...
It's getting to the point of interfering with work... She often acts like hard-of-listening but she really doesn't hear, and makes no effort to think about asking the same thing 2-3 times...
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post #4 of 30 (permalink) Old 07-24-2016, 10:26 PM
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Re: Convincing spouse to get hearing aid

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Any suggestions? She's 57 and in top health.
Yes, stop thinking she is in top health while suffering from hearing loss.
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post #5 of 30 (permalink) Old 07-24-2016, 10:46 PM
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Re: Convincing spouse to get hearing aid

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Originally Posted by john117 View Post
As if I have all my problems solved, seems wifey needs a hearing aid. One ear is at 55℅ the other maybe 80℅. Between that and her lack of concentration after asking a question it's nearly impossible to have a conversation...

Any suggestions? She's 57 and in top health.
If you are able to quote those percentages, then I assume she has had formal hearing testing.

If so, then likely the audiologist or otolaryngologist who performed/oversaw/ordered the testing would have already suggested it.
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post #6 of 30 (permalink) Old 07-25-2016, 03:46 AM
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Re: Convincing spouse to get hearing aid

what are her concerns ?
cosmetic or social pic ?
may be she is feeling confortable by not hearing what ppl say , hence claim she didn't hear ....
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post #7 of 30 (permalink) Old 07-25-2016, 05:45 AM
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Re: Convincing spouse to get hearing aid

I started wearing them last year. Mine are so tiny that you cannot see them even when I wear my hair up or when you are specifically looking for them.

I'm very glad I have them. My hearing loss is small but it had gotten to the point where I had a hard time hearing vowel sounds and some consonants when background noise was present.

I thought everyone was mumbling but it was me.
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post #8 of 30 (permalink) Old 07-25-2016, 07:37 AM
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Re: Convincing spouse to get hearing aid

My mother had 70% loss in both ears, according to the audiologist. For years and years we begged her to get hearing aids. Finally, at wits end, sibs and I pitched in to buy her hearing aids at 6K. She never wore them.

Turns out, it was early signs of dementia and part of confabulation. She wasn't processing spoken language because she was zoning out even during a conversation she absolutely was keyed in on. Then she started making up replies based on what she thought she heard, confabulation.

Once her dementia had progressed where making up her own meaning was too complicated, we found she could hear pretty damn well. Imagine that!

My advice, don't ever repeat what you've said already. If you must have a reply from her, insist on eye contact first, then use simple words enunciating each word. When she gets angry for treating her like a child....get over it. There is no pleasing someone determined to not be pleased.

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post #9 of 30 (permalink) Old 07-25-2016, 08:05 AM
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Re: Convincing spouse to get hearing aid

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My mother had 70% loss in both ears, according to the audiologist. For years and years we begged her to get hearing aids. Finally, at wits end, sibs and I pitched in to buy her hearing aids at 6K. She never wore them.

Turns out, it was early signs of dementia and part of confabulation. She wasn't processing spoken language because she was zoning out even during a conversation she absolutely was keyed in on. Then she started making up replies based on what she thought she heard, confabulation.

Once her dementia had progressed where making up her own meaning was too complicated, we found she could hear pretty damn well. Imagine that!

My advice, don't ever repeat what you've said already. If you must have a reply from her, insist on eye contact first, then use simple words enunciating each word. When she gets angry for treating her like a child....get over it. There is no pleasing someone determined to not be pleased.
Exactly what happened to my father, though it happened at 77 not 57. I think that there were signs of dementia much earlier that we probably interpreted as the result of hearing loss.
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post #10 of 30 (permalink) Old 07-25-2016, 08:26 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Convincing spouse to get hearing aid

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Yes, stop thinking she is in top health while suffering from hearing loss.
Nobody died from hearing loss unless they did not hear the train whistle...

At her age she's athletic, can walk 10 miles or cycle 35, is a size 4 125 lb, takes no pills, and so on. Poster girl for the AARP I suppose. And I really don't feel she's suffering from it. We are.

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post #11 of 30 (permalink) Old 07-25-2016, 08:30 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Convincing spouse to get hearing aid

Anon Pink has some good suggestions as always. The thing is she refuses to focus when asking a question, expecting people will repeat 2 and 3 times. She had audio exams when leaving employers as she was sometimes working on the factory floor in her early years and they had this requirement, or she had it done as part of a physical. Last time was a couple years ago.
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post #12 of 30 (permalink) Old 07-25-2016, 09:20 AM
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Re: Convincing spouse to get hearing aid

I wear hearing aids and I couldn't imagine my life without them. My hearing loss was discovered when I was a child. I wore them at a young age then stopping wearing them as I started to get older (kids are cruel). Once I got out of college, it started to effect me in ways that I finally accepted it. It was hard and emotional for me. It's something that you don't want to admit. I was exhausted from trying to hear things all the time. Focusing so much all the time wore me out! I love pillow talk with my H but it's so hard for me to do.

I've been told that I speak differently but I don't hear it. However, I'm self conscious about it. :-(

It sounds like your wife isn't focusing and that could directly be from the loss of hearing. I tell you, it's EXHAUSTING. She may have just given up.

A few tips for you: 1. Never talk to her from another room. 2. Always make sure that she can see you when you speak. This applies to talking in the dark as well. Talking around a campfire is hard (sad, isn't it). 3. If you ever use letters as if you're spelling something for her, make sure you say something like: D as in Dog. C as in Cat. Certain letters can sound the same (C, D, P, T, B).

Making things a little easier for her will reduce both YOUR frustration and her frustration.

Hearing aids are VERY expensive. Unfortunately, not many companies cover them. My work place just recently provided for a small amount of coverage. It's very minor but is certainly better than what it was before, which was NOTHING.

Sit her down and tell her how frustrated you are about communication with her. Say it in a very loving way and tell her that you'll help her with the whole process (& make sure you do this). In exchange, she'll get a life with better quality; she'll hear the leaves rustle, she'll hear the birds sing, she'll hear the water run in a creek, she'll hear the rain drizzle, she'll hear a baby laugh. Then on the other side, when there's a sound that isn't so wonderful (such as a loud obnoxious person in a restaurant), she can turn down her hearing aids. This is a perk that a person without aids doesn't get!
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post #13 of 30 (permalink) Old 07-26-2016, 09:27 AM
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Re: Convincing spouse to get hearing aid

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Anon Pink has some good suggestions as always. The thing is she refuses to focus when asking a question, expecting people will repeat 2 and 3 times. She had audio exams when leaving employers as she was sometimes working on the factory floor in her early years and they had this requirement, or she had it done as part of a physical. Last time was a couple years ago.
If you're certain you've had eye contact and have enunciated, do not repeat. Ever. Yes, much easier said than done. Get a white board and some wipe off markers and write it down.

When your daughters are home remind them to enunciate, and get eye contact. The eye contact is important because it not only enables focus but it physically situated her head in the best way to capture the sound waves you're making. Any background noise will have to assumed as a much higher level of interference than a normal person.

Dementia or FTD can start at anytime and the early signs often look like hearing loss because language processing speed is affected first, usually.

My youngest gets very frustrated with me when I can't hear her as I'm brushing my teeth or washing dishes. The back ground noise of the water running is way too close to allow her words to come through clearly. I don't think I have hearing loss just because I can't hear her when I'm so close to back ground noise. However, I am terrified that I am doomed to some progressive neurological disease so I'm hyper aware of symptoms. I wish I could get a baseline MRI right now so that later on there is something to compare. I absolutely refuse to place my family is the caregiver position, so I want to know about a diagnosis as early as possible. At least in enough time to travel to Oregon and be of sound mind to sign the consent forms.

How does your wife feel about assisted suicide for the terminally ill? Now there's a fun conversation for a Saturday night!

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post #14 of 30 (permalink) Old 07-26-2016, 09:43 AM
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Re: Convincing spouse to get hearing aid

My husband told me when we first met that he had only 30% hearing in one ear. 20 years later and he denies ever saying it, and denies he has a problem. It is a HUGE problem for me - I get SO frustrated with him sometimes. I really do not understand why he won't get a hearing aid. It's so bad that my daughter says she will never leave him alone with our grandson because she doesn't believe he would hear him if there was a problem, or hear what he says when he's older.
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post #15 of 30 (permalink) Old 07-26-2016, 10:07 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Convincing spouse to get hearing aid

Part of the problem is the huge house we live in. We are rarely in the same room. I'm in the cat room now (of course he has his own suite ) and she's two floors up. Even when we are in the same floor she has the TV playing or doing something so good luck getting clear audio...
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