“You’re not listening!”

by Nena

(Indianapolis)

I have had hearing issues for most of my life. I’ve had multiple ear infections since I was a week old. I lost count on how many times I’ve had perforated eardrums. I’ve had doctors ask me if I was near an explosion.

Growing up, I would either speak too loud or too soft. I was never able to know the volume of my voice. People would make fun of me all the time.

Now, at the age of 41, I have Meneiere’s. I have awful dizzy spells and sometimes people think I am drunk. Or sometimes I feel so motion sick that all I do is stay in bed with a garbage can by my side to puke into. My hearing has become worse, but it fluctuates. If I’m having an attack, my hearing can be pretty bad. Allergies add to this because of fluid build up.

I work at a front desk at a hotel. Guests are downright NASTY to me because I can’t always understand them. If a housekeeping person is vacuuming in the lobby, then it’s really bad. Some guests are super hard to understand on the phone. Sometimes I have to have my coworkers take the phone if a guest is being nasty.

Most of the time when a guest gets nasty and saying “You are not listening.” I quip back. “I am listening. I am hard of hearing. Speak slower so I can understand you and read your lips.”

Then they apologize all over themselves. I want to say “Take that, creep!”

Why do people who have their full hearing get so snotty at those of us who don’t? It’s not like we are trying to be annoying or difficult.

We DO listen. YOU hearing folks need to speak clearly if you want us to understand you!

Comments for “You’re not listening!”

Mar 01, 2014

Same here!

by: Monica


I am 31 and have gone through the same thing! I grew up hard of hearing with a progressive hearing loss. By the time I was age 3-4 I was deaf unilateral in my right ear. Not discovered however until the audiologists came to our school in 2nd grade. My other side is still slowly loosing hearing. Here and there. I learned American Sign Language while in high school from a Deaf friend. However I didn’t understand too much of it until I took college courses. Which weren’t that intensive to meet my needs. And so I took a residential program for interpreters for two years and got my associates degree. I am now in a residential program for Deaf education for my Bachelors degree.

A few years ago I had extreme vertigo, and was also prognosed with Meneires. However, that ENT was wrong, they didn’t do enough extensive testing even though I specifically asked for them to. They said I was being paranoid. I was literally falling down I could not even walk. It turns out I had an awful inner infection that was mastoiditis. On the mastoid bone. Which is rare and only happens when the ear infection is not controlled or caught by the ENT. It required surgery to remove it. Which was my number 6 ear operation. I have had a number of rare infections and I let that ENT know. Long story short I went back to an old ENT that I didn’t like (his attitude) but what do you do, he is the best.

By the way I also live in Indianapolis, IN born and raised. I’d like to meet you someday!


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