How do i explain i don't want my hearing aids?

Evie Yancey

New Member
So I'm 15, 10th grade, I've had hearing aids since 3rd grade. I have a nasty habit of losing a hearing aid every now and then. In the past 6 years I've lost 2 hearing aids, and Monday made 3 hearing aids. When I told my teacher the other day he asked me why I don't just have a cochlear, and I got a little mad, because of how much I don't want one. When I told my mom she was pretty calm about it at first, but understandably on edge because it's not like money to replace said hearing aid grows on trees. But last night we got in a fight because it's not acceptable how often I lose them. There are a few things I have that cost a lot less money that I have never lost such as my pooh bear I got for my first Christmas, my laptop and then I wear 2 necklaces, 1 choker I made from safety pins, jump rings and a pentagram for Supernatural and a gunmetal chain with a piece of carved onyx. The necklaces are my safety blankets. I rub them when I'm stressed instead of drawing butterflies on my arms or snapping a rubber band on my wrist. Because I have never lost these things but I've lost my hearing aids, my mother is in a word, pissed. How do I explain that I don't like my hearing aids, and I don't care about them without getting in even more trouble? Because I know I'm not the only person that hates wearing hearing aids and they don't help me, they only make things worse, but for some reason my mom can't understand that. How do I tell her without it ending with her having a meltdown? Please help any advice or personal experiences are appreciated.
 

DeafNerdMommy

Well-Known Member
I'm 23 and my parents still get mad when I don't wear mine. I got mine when I was 18 and someday they don't help me do I just don't wear them. But if my parents out I get yelled at. I tried to reason with them but they paid for them so... good luck
 

Tetracyclone

Active Member
Can you explain a bit more before we chew on our feet offering advice. Just for reference, I've worn hearing aids for 28 years and certainly never liked them. I actively hated my non-digital aids and did not wear them much. Then I got digital in 2000 but still avoided wearing them much of the time until about 2005, when my dad insisted that my comprehension would get a lot better if I wore them most of the time. He was right, but they get dreadfully uncomfortable and I don't like them! On the other hand, I cannot have even a minimal conversation without them.

Are your devices digital?

How do they make things worse?

Are there any situations in which they help you understand?

You are sure to be correct that you will only be in more trouble if you explain " that I don't like my hearing aids, and I don't care about them. " Your mom will need to understand the details of why, and you need some technical advice to understand that yourself. Some will be offered hear once we know what you are experiencing, but it might also be possible for your audiologist to help with this.

While you are at this, can you put into words why you are dead set against a cochlear implant? I'm just curious.
 

Evie Yancey

New Member
So for one to keep in mind, I have analog hearing aids. But the reason I lost my hearing in the first place is due to a rare auto-inflammatory immune disease called NOMID. Basically my immune system is always on, causing inflammation and damage to multiple parts of the body mostly the joints, brain, optic and auditory nerve. The damage to my auditory nerve is very unique and so it's close to impossible to properly program my hearing aids to help the loss in all of the right places.
So the three main reasons I'm against a cochlear implant is because 1, it is brain surgery and I have enough problems with my brain already, 2 there is metal in cochlear implants, and so I'd only be able to go through certain MRI machines and I have MRI's constantly, and lastly the amount of money that it would cost. However if I really do end up needing a cochlear over hearing aids, I won't fight with the doctors too much. It's just very annoying when people with no knowledge about the technology start to insist I invest so much money into it.
My hearing aids themselves though give me more migraines, my mother says she doesn't care that they give me more headaches she only cares that I wear them. So I wear them at school and I only wear one at a time, usually it's my right hearing aid which is the one I lost on Monday. I've also tried two types of molds, both give my headaches, so we switched back to the cheap one that I can get through the school for about $45 per ear. I've also tried to explain that there are no filters on hearing aids, so while my mom could ignore someone talking behind her when she's trying to listen to someone else talk, I can't do that because my hearing aids make everything louder, not the things I'm focusing on.
The only time they have ever helped me is when I'm at school, there is a microphone that the school has that is similar to Bluetooth. The teacher or just the speaker wears it around their neck and I can hear them if I'm within 50 feet and there is nothing metal between me and the device like a computer that messes with the signal. I only have this device at school and it also only helps when the classroom is large or noisy.
The main reason I don't care about them is because they give me the headaches, and I don't feel like they help me. If I felt like they helped me, I would be more than interested in them, but all they do is get in my way. Another example would be when people are talking to me. My hearing aids make them louder, not clearer. So all I hear is just louder "herermerffeferhemmmersmmmsf", and while I can lip read, it hurt my eyes and makes my vision blurry because of the damage I have in my optic nerves. If instead I heard, "The appointment with the dentist is at (random time)" then I would wear my hearing aids. But just so everything is clear, I DID NOT LOSE MY HEARING AID BECAUSE I DON'T LIKE IT!!! On Sunday night, I almost fell asleep with my hearing aid in, so I took it out, put it on my head board and went to sleep. On Monday morning, I was rushed out the door and forgot my hearing aid. When I got home, my hearing aid was nowhere to be found, and so far I've torn up that corner of my room trying to find it.
Sorry that was long winded, but I hope I have better explained some of my situation.
 

Moondancer

Well-Known Member
Just saying that you don't wear it. I don't wear it in the hearing environment everyday for many many years. It's not hard to say.
 

deafdyke

Well-Known Member
Tell her they give you headaches, and that they don't help you. Very simple. Tell her what you told us..."if they helped me, I would wear them!"
 

Rom

Member
I'm 23 and my parents still get mad when I don't wear mine. I got mine when I was 18 and someday they don't help me do I just don't wear them. But if my parents out I get yelled at. I tried to reason with them but they paid for them so... good luck

Honestly the more I read from you, the more I think we're the same person LOL. My parental unit have now put a ban on me speaking to them unless my hearing aids are in. I'd really like the little buggers to die a painful death so that they may never grace my ears again.
 

Rom

Member
I would tell them exactly why you do not like wearing them. Someone who has never had hearing aids is not going to understand what it's like with them on. They're going to assume they're like glasses and a quick fix.
 

AlleyCat

Well-Known Member
In your parents' defense, hearing aids ARE expensive. I would just tell them you don't want to wear them. If they insist on getting you replacements, keep them in a safe place (e.g your bedroom) where you would not lose them. I totally understand you not wanting to wear them, but you sound a little immature/irresponsible for keep losing them. Take a little responsibility and find a safe place for them when you're not wearing them.
 

rockin'robin

Well-Known Member
Alley hit it on the nail....HA are very expensive. And feel most people would be frantic if they lost theirs and not being able to hear anything....and the OP said the aids didn't help her at all ??...so how does she "hear" the teachers at school?...Unless she goes to a Deaf school and knows ASL....
HA and even the CI can't help me, but if they could, then it or I would treat them like gold!
And I, too, as a Parent and my kid lost their Aids?...Oh boy!...Very upsetting, not to mention expensive.
 

AmputeeOT

Active Member
Hearing aids are super expensive! Which is probably why your parents are upset you lost them.

It will be really hard to explain to your parents that you don't like them and that you do not want to wear them.

I am sorry your teacher said that to you about a cochlear implant - because for one, there is still an external processor like a hearing aid you wear on the outside, and getting a cochlear will NOT prevent you from losing it! People have a lot of misconceptions about Cochlear implants so he was probably thinking you can't lose it if you have a cochlear. He just didn't understand there are external parts.

You asked this: "How do I explain that I don't like my hearing aids, and I don't care about them without getting in even more trouble?"

You might get in trouble no matter what but here are my thoughts on this:

if you are Deaf/HOH, it is 100% YOUR CHOICE whether you use hearing aids or implants or not. Nobody should force you to wear them. I am an amputee and it is 100% my choice if I want to use my prosthesis, use my wheelchair, or use crutches to get around. I am also Deaf and it's 100% my choice to wear hearing aids or not. In my case I choose to wear them at work but otherwise I don't wear them - I sign instead, or I write notes, or I read lips.

So if you hate them and don't want to wear them, I 100% understand but it's also important to communicate that to your parents so they don't waste money buying you something you aren't going to use. Probably if you had said you would not wear them BEFORE they bought them, they would not have bought them but now since they already bought them they are going to be upset because they will feel like they spent all this money and now you won't use them.

I would say even if you don't like them, it's still your responsibility to not lose them since your parents paid a lot of money for them and entrusted you to take care of them. If you are able to take care of them without losing them (even if you hate them and secretly don't wear them at school) you are showing responsibility and in turn your parents will let you have more freedom if you prove you are responsible. Maybe you can try to find the one you lost?

I do wonder though if you might be able to do something to them to like them more. How about decorating them? Mine are purple and the earmolds are purple with silver glitter, so they look really cool. Could you maybe use a bit of clear fishing line and tether them to your necklace?
 

rockin'robin

Well-Known Member
I have said that and she gets mad. Then she makes me put them in. Once she can no longer see me I take them out.
How much hearing do you have without the HA's?...Can you hear the teachers in your school?....and do you understand what people are saying without the aids? So you would rather not wear the Aids...exactly why?...if they don't fit right then ask ur parents to take you back and get it all fixed.
 

Tetracyclone

Active Member
Out-of-order-
Phew! You are a bright young woman- despite being hearing-impaired you write clearly and well. My first devices were analog and I hated them for all the same reasons you dislike yours. You can't pick individual voices out of the background noise to make sense of conversation. The aids are useful one-on-one in a quiet place and that is about it. I'm shocked your audiologist has not explained this clearly to your mother. The problems are technical, not emotional, and it was a very smart move to come on this forum and ask advice. Do you have any classes at school that would let you study the technical reasons hearing aids sometimes don't help?

(I think the system your teachers use is the hearing loop (http://www.hearingloop.org/)).

Your autoimmune disease puts a spin on your situation that complicates things for everyone. I imagine your mom has been deeply worried for you a long time and that the burden of health care costs on your family makes all of you quite nervous about expenses. Your move toward taking charge of this entire issue is going to be a big win for the whole family.

Finally, cuz sometimes I talk too much, check this thread about migraines and hearing;
http://www.alldeaf.com/threads/interesting-question.129266/#post-2510785
Don't let is scare you since the 2 are linked for only some people, but do tell your autoimmune doc you think the devices bring on migraines sometimes. See what s/he says. I am not prone to migraines but sometimes I get headaches because the ear molds irritate me.

THIS IS A JOB FOR SCIENCE! :deal: oh wait, I said that already...
 

Calvin

In Hazzard County
Super Moderator
Premium Member
OP... I'm sure some of us were in the same shoes you are in.

My parents paid for my HA ever since I was 2 through high school, I've broken a set or two hearing aids and my parents were mad. One of the time I forgot to take off my HA while taking a bath and I submerged my head into the water. The HA didn't last long after that, as it had annoying static sound and had to be replaced. Also I had issues with ear molds as there is some different ingredients in it that made my ear itchy (irritate).

I had to wear HA throughout my school years, what I most hated to wear in school was comtek which is assisted listening device for HA in the 1980's. Better HA over the assisted device.

Good luck... I hope it works out for everyone involved for the OP.
 

Tetracyclone

Active Member
I've lost 2 hearing aids under very suspicious circumstances. I knew exactly where I'd last had them but could never find them. That kind of thing messes with my mind.

I've slowly trained myself to always take out my hearing aids in one of 2 places. Either at my desk or next to my bed. Not much excuse for laying down with your HAs, so it's a matter of training your own habits - a bit like training yourself to brush your teeth when you were younger.

We just do the best we can do, learn from what happens and try to see bad things do not repeat.
 

AmputeeOT

Active Member
I lost one of mine on a trip to New York - I had the (admittedly short-sighted) habit of taking them out and hooking them on the collar of my shirt. I did this on a bus and then walked 1/2 a mile before I realized it was gone. I learned my lesson that day.
 

zajko

Member
So the three main reasons I'm against a cochlear implant is because 1, it is brain surgery and I have enough problems with my brain already, 2 there is metal in cochlear implants, and so I'd only be able to go through certain MRI machines and I have MRI's constantly, and lastly the amount of money that it would cost. However if I really do end up needing a cochlear over hearing aids, I won't fight with the doctors too much. It's just very annoying when people with no knowledge about the technology start to insist I invest so much money into it.

Just a few facts: CI surgery is not a brain surgery, it's head/ear surgery. And there is one implant type which is quite MRI compatible - check Synchronny from Med-El if you are at least remotely interested in CIs.
(not saying you have to get it.. just clarifying. Good luck in your life with whatever way you choose :))
 

Tetracyclone

Active Member
Just a few facts: CI surgery is not a brain surgery, it's head/ear surgery. And there is one implant type which is quite MRI compatible - check Synchronny from Med-El if you are at least remotely interested in CIs.
(not saying you have to get it.. just clarifying. Good luck in your life with whatever way you choose :))

If I were this young woman I'd have a long talk with my auto-immune doc before considering any elective surgery. She may be high risk but I lack knowledge of her particular disease. That is great to know about an MRI compatible device!
 
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