Getting a Job With Hearing Loss

Hello Everyone

Forget it.  That’s my answer.  There is no way that I can mention my hearing when I apply for a job.  During this recession I have applied for dozens.  The ones where I have tried to get in via a disability quota have received a polite refusal from a higher level.  So the Line Manager has replied.  Companies of any size cannot cope with a hearing loss because their main function is to have their staff communicate with the customer.  It is a fundamental misconception of hearing loss that says everyone who has it must have no hearing.

Hearing aids have solved the hearing issue.  Private ones enable your hearing; such a simple statement yet they really do work.  Conversation is now possible.  I’m in the conversation rather than always being on the back foot and on the fringes of groups.  I would be ready to run if I didn’t understand.  I succumbed to buying hearing-aids and they now provide protection when out.  The National Health Service ones are not far behind thanks to competition between the big hearing-aid companies to be awarded the contract to supply the UK public with hearing-aids.  The way forward for the NHS is to provide smaller moulds.  They will be individual moulds, not generic.  Those ones are for mild hearing loss.

Anyway I still haven’t found a regular-paid job.  I make it to interview stage and then find the sound is bouncing off hard tables, laminate flooring and the walls or the Panel of interviewers is sitting with their backs to a window.  It’s impossible to lipread faces in shadow.  I did ask one guy to close the blinds.  Did that lose me the job?  It’s impossible to say.  Still I have another interview next week.  Wish me luck.

Would you mention your hearing loss at interview?

I really would like to know.

Whenever I ask for feedback they tell me I’m better suited to something else  At the British Heart Foundation I was better suited to their retail arm, i.e., selling than I was to their Assistant Store Manager role.  Giving up on job hunting is not an option; I need to work.

Any input or suggestions you have, would be gratefully received.

 

Debbie

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The Angel Islington London 2012 Hearing Wellbeing 2012)

The Loneliness of Hearing-Aids

English: bulky and hydrophobic anesthetic mole...

English: bulky and hydrophobic anesthetic molecules accumulate inside the neuronal cell membrane causing its distortion and expansion (thickening) due to volume displacement. Membrane thickening reversibly alters function of membrane ion channels thus providing anesthetic effect. Actual chemical structure of the anesthetic agent per se was not important, but its molecular volume plays the major role: the more space within membrane is occupied by anesthetic – the greater is the anesthetic effect. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

 

 

Hello Everyone

 

“You can hear one-to-one, can’t you? Be grateful.”

 

I try to be grateful but I cannot join in conversations around me because I have a hearing-loss. Sorry to whine but the so-called inbuilt loop programme doesn’t work properly. It works a bit, like a layer of foundation on the face makes an even layer, but hearing in a group of three women yesterday was useless. It did distract me. I was there for a dental appointment so any distraction is good.

 

I’m sure she gave me instructions at the end, but I was long past absorbing them. She had asked whether I wanted an anaesthetic before proceeding with a chip on a tooth. What? At the dentist with no painkiller?

 

“W can see how we go. Tell me if it hurts.”

 

Of course it hurts, I lift my hand. “Aagh argh …” it’s difficult to enunciate anything when someone’s fingers are in your mouth.

 

“Are you okay?  Oh the gum is sensitive.” She said and shifted to somewhere a little less painful.

 

Later I found out that she hadn’t used anaesthetic on the previous visit either. But I thought she was using a new painfree sort of anaesthetic. Is it my brain giving out a natural anaesthetic?

 

I wonder whether it would work if I told my brain:

 

“You can hear, of course you can hear. Don’t be silly; you don’t need these aids.”

 

I tried it, but wildly overslept on the first attempt and was late for the dental appointment. Has anyone else tried this sort of attempt at persuading the brain?

 

Have a great hearing week

 

 

 

Debbie

 

 

 

Debbie Jeffrey

 

 

 

 

Orange (CCL Hearing Wellbeing 2012)

New hearing-aids

Hi Everyone

 

I’ve got new hearing-aids from Siemens. I bought them during a turbulent period when I was going to shoot a short film. With three guys. They would all talk at once, wouldn’t they?

 

My head would spin. I had determined to buy new hearing-aids. They were on an emergency setting as I had silt in the river, also known as earwax. Charmed.

 

“Hello, can I look in your ears?”

 

This would normally be an invitation to scarper, but the chances are that he or she is a Hearing-Aid Audiologist. I have the lady version, who speaks my language, I hope.

 

Ten days later my ears were wax-free, if that is the term.  Now we could see what they were really like.

 

These hearing-aids have receptors in the tips. They aren’t the plastic half-open moulds that I had two years ago and they aren’t the ‘tulip’ tips that I’ve had until now. With the latter, I couldn’t hear because every time my head moved, they stopped working. I’m having the same problem with these. I shall have to find some people to talk to, so that I can test it properly.

 

This is what I want from a hearing-aid:

 

• I want them to automatically re-adjust to people speaking loudly or softly.

 

• I also need a dampener on them, to alleviate loud noises.

 

• I don’t want to hear the conversation of the people behind me. Just sounds will be enough to warn me of a lorry etc.

 

I want a conversation in a group.  I’ve just heard of Book Club locally.

 

Can you think of anything else?

 

Have a great  hearing week

 

 

 

Debbie Jeffrey

 

‘Join That Conversation’ – the one you’ve been on the fringes for a while.  This blog is meant to give you confidence to plunge in!  What can go wrong?!  Tell us, we’ll sort them out.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Happy New Year! (copyright Hearing Wellbeing 2012)

Nothing Less Than Your Elbow …

Hello from the English south coast where it never rains (in the 2 months I’ve been here) yet today, there is a huge thundercloud sitting overhead. How exciting.  It is something to look forward to, when we are cosily at home.

Comfort is what you want with hearing-aids.  Have you seen the ones for £0.99?  The price and how to order are at the top of the webpage to make sure you focus on that.  It’s not about how they will work.  It is a question of how much damage you could do to your ears,whilst fiddling with something not made to suit them.  None of us wants more deafness than we have, thanks.

The frustration of explaining that plastic balls will never help hearing ,to  someone looking for a cheap fix ,is distressing.  Couple that with the fundamental issue of trying to hear and men refuse or kick things.  Women burst into tears or any degree of both.

I met a lovely man, so gentle, a collector of sound wires over 50 years.  I didn’t understand much of what he said, but that was because he was talking about connectors and my hearing’s not brilliant.  It was a missed opportunity to learn more about his specialist subject.  Older people have such a lot to give, but the young aren’t taking advantage of it.

Later I heard that he had pitched into hospital with an unrelated complaint and had thrown his dinner on the floor.  it was so unlike the sort of thing he would do, until I found that he had woken up to find himself on an alien planet, where people’s mouths moved, but he could not hear them and wanted him to do things he didn’t understand.  He didn’t know where he was. They hadn’t even put his hearing-aids in!

When the very kind and caring staff of the residential home found out it could be the hearing-aids she was mortified.  She put the phone down to go and tell the hospital straight away and later rang me to tell me that was the problem.   A perfectly lovely person had been labelled ‘difficult’.   All it needs is a little training for the staff on the ward and at the Home.

Being unable to hear can make you look you crazy as you are still missing half or more of the conversation. Patients and staff alike get fed up and give up.

If the properly fitted and moulded hearing-aid had been gently inserted, he’d have had a better chance of hearing.

A plastic ball gives you none of those and frankly, is dangerous plastic ball.  It could damage you in two ways.

a)       First you’ll jam it into your ear.  That means lots of time in hospital and pain. It’s a waste of £0.99 which doesn’t sound a lot until you realise 50,000 people could respond to the advert;

b)      You’ll jam it so hard into your ear, that you’ll hurt it and have to go the Doctor to get it out.  Any other way, including self-help will damage your ear and your hearing.

Also you really will go crazy with the waste of money,  time and hassle.   Our recommendation is to steer clear.  They are dangerous  to your health.  As Granny said:

“Nothng bigger than your elbow should go in your ear.”

Except a properly fitted hearing-aid fitted by an expert.  Nothing less will do for you.

Have a safe week

 

Debbie

Debbie Jeffrey

‘Join that Conversation

http://www.hearingwellbeing.com

 

 

2011 printemps avril plantae plante nature pen...

2011 printemps avril plantae plante nature pensée-bio 2011-04-24 rosa rose rosa-canina rosier-des-chiens bords-d’oise étangs-de-cergy oise cergy val-d’oise france (Photo credit: Pensée Bio)

English: Port of Liverpool Building and statue...

English: Port of Liverpool Building and statue of King Edward VII at the Pier Head in Liverpool, England. This is a Grade II* listed building which is part of Liverpool’s UNESCO designated World Heritage Maritime Mercantile City. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Old Customs House at Exeter docks. Built in 16...

Old Customs House at Exeter docks. Built in 1681 & the oldest surviving purpose built customs house in Britain. It is a Grade one listed building. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I have landed on the south coast of England where there is a plethora of things to do and lovely people of all kinds.

It is fascinating to live in a three-sided square and look at how the sound travels around it. Maybe other people living here don’t notice but I am sensitised to sound as I think about it all the time.

I can hear wheel nuts being unscrewed at the garage which is at least thirty metres away as the crow flies. For someone with a hearing issue, even wearing hearing-aids, this is not only weird; I would have previously said it was impossible! I was standing at the kitchen window, looking through a gap between houses and saw it happen. I had thought it was next door drilling, or as described to a utility supplier:

Yes, next door seems to be building a new house.”

It sounds like drilling. What is odd is that the landlord living below does not notice the drilling, yet the lady in the ground-floor flat complains his family is noisy.

What if the whole of our Grade II listed house, (walls one metre thick), is sensitised to sound by the gap between the houses? Sound blasts from the garage through the gap and hits the back wall of the building.

There is also one of those mobile phone eyesore masts, planted in the garage forecourt. That may have nothing to do with the sound blasts from the wheel-nut drilling, or it may be amplifying it.

Do you know anyone who could explain this?

Thanks and have a great week!

Debbie Jeffrey

‘Join That Conversation’

http://www.hearingwellbeing.com

 

People Know How To Help Your Hearing

Library book sale 2013

Library book sale 2013 (Photo credit: Christchurch City Libraries)

Hello

Yesterday, a friend I hadn’t seen for ages, came over for the day.  We were walking down the street and suddenly she swopped sides so that she was walking on the outside.

“You’ll hear me better if I’m nearest the traffic.”

Such a simple gesture, so profound its impact on me; I was happy all day.  She just thought about my hearing and her natural compassionate instinct told her what to do.

If you’re hard-of-hearing, you know that the result depends on your hearing level that day, where you are and what else is going on around you.  Another person blocks the noise as the sound  has to go round them and you are effectively in their shadow.  For me, it was the thought that meant the most.

So to the husbands out there, never mind the coat over a puddle.  That’s been done, so old hat.   Go on make your loved one’s day.

Have a great week.

Debbie

Debbie Jeffrey

Hearing Wellbeing

Happy New Year! (copyright Hearing Wellbeing 2012)

Hearing A Talk Outside

Tour guides

Tour guides (Photo credit: Marcin Wichary)

Hello

Telling someone about a hearing issue works if you make it funny.  Going for a walk with total strangers can be scary, or not, depending on what you think.  I decided it was going to be great fun and leaped in.

The tour guide was nervous,  so telling him that one of his party might wander off due to not hearing him, made everyone laugh.  It’s also a great excuse if you are the sort of person who is likely to stop and look at something and then wonder where everyone is!

They wanted to know about hearing, but a ten-second response was not going to work.   Then someone asked:

“How are you managing?”

“I’m fine, there is no issue.  I just am.”

That confused her or maybe she was alarmed as I jumped in the air.  It was a fascinating walk and talk about the history of a place and I was happy and I think that when you’re happy, all problems disappear.  So that’s it; make yourself happy.   It takes a moment to decide to give yourself a break and have a new experience.  Those people were all kind, smiley, interesting people and we all had a great time.

To your happy time!

Debbie

Debbie Jeffrey

Hearing Wellbeing

PS.  The book is coming out soon!  It’s for everyone.

Uplift Your Hearts - London 2012 (CCL Hearing Wellbeing Copyright 2012)

Temporary Loss of Hearing Leads to Insight

Age-standardised disability-adjusted life year...

Age-standardised disability-adjusted life year (DALY) rates from Hearing loss (adult onset) by country (per 100,000 inhabitants). (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Hello there

My friend lost her hearing on one side for a week.

Her first reaction was frustration.  Yes, we’ve been there.

She said that she was ashamed of being irritable and even jealous that everyone else could hear but she could not.

Her second thought was of me and how frustrating my life must be.

“Actually, no, I’ve learnt to ride over that.”

That is what this blog is all about: ways to slide gracefully over it.  Denial of it just builds frustration.

Be happy.  Happy hearing and have a great week.

Debbie Jeffrey

‘Join That Conversation’ – the one you’ve been meaning to join but didn’t dare.

🙂

Airships to Spaceships - Innovation At Farnborough Airshow (CCL Hearing Wellbeing

Hello everyone

Sorry to have been away a while.  I almost had a job in France but whereas the English will go to desperate lengths to employ someone who has arrived penniless from somewhere else and must be given every consideration, the French prefer to employ their own citizens.  It’s frustrating!

Of course the other, equally likely reason is that I could not understand some of the words the Indian woman said in English.  Her French was much easier to understand; it was a more open accent.

The workplace being near the sea, I told her my hobbies were skiing in winter and shopping in summer.  I meant to say sailing which is ‘voile*’ but my brain got stuck on ‘vent*’ which means ‘wind’ and I stretched it to ‘ ventes*’, which is shopping.

“Oh well,” as one of my children used to say.

Following some fiddling with phone sockets and swopping to a phone with buttons big enough to see from India, (which is why I hadn’t been using it), I waited a whole week for a call.  Then I rang the UK agent.  We set up the response to come in the following morning, in spite of the email promise the Friday before from India, which had been delayed.

I guess they knew about my ears.  I guess they knew about my amplified phone.  What they didn’t know, is that it’s an old one, designed more for people without hearing-aids.  The telecoil is in the base of the handset – uh – a bit far from the ear.  (For the uninitiated, the telecoil communicates with your hearing-aid when you switch it to loop system and makes the sound clearer).

No call all morning.  At 12.15 p.m., I picked up the phone to make a call.  Odd, no dialling tone.  I asked son to scrabble under desk to investigate why and he came out looking rueful.

“You can’t make calls without this plugged in, Mum.”

The phone wire had come out of the wall.  I rang the UK agent as I didn’t think I could possibly explain.  A copout?  Not really.  Their emails were delightful salutations but when they had to say something unscheduled, they came unstuck.  Besides who would believe me?  I have decided it was fate and moved on.

If you want to hear words clearly, you need a phone with amplification and tone.  No tone, no hearing people talking.  If you get one with too much amplification, your ears will hurt and you still won’t hear.   I used to let my customers try them out before buying, so ask your Audiologist before you go.

Best of luck

 

Debbie Jeffrey

‘Join that conversation’

www.hearingwellbeing.com

The Angel Islington London 2012 Hearing Wellbeing 2012)

Switch Off The Fridge. It’s Too Noisy!

I love language,  writing it and hearing it.  Often people are surprised.  Why?  Does a sight issue rule their lives?  You could say it depends on how much you can see or hear.

In hearing, you lose a tiny bit in the high notes and suddenly the edges of words do not sound as sharp.  If you have just been diagnosed with a hearing issue and someone has arranged for hearing-aids, it is the start of an adventure.  You will hear things you have not heard in years, like birdsong.  🙂

When you clap your hands over your ears and ask your family to please switch off the fridge, be ready for argument!  It’s hard but try and relax.  Stay away from the fridge as much as possible for a few days.  (I can see this would be impossible for teenagers.)  You will learn to tune it out.  People with ordinary hearing do that automatically.  Be prepared for them to be disappointed.  They think your fantastic digital hearing-aids mean you are a superbeing, so when you complain about noises their reactions are the following:

a)       The hearing-aid is not working;

b)      It did not fix the hearing issue;

c)       They have failed you in some way.

Reassure them as well as yourself.  It takes a month at least to get used to them.  A colleague was on the point of taking his back after two months and then it was suggested he try the ones he had before.

“I had no idea.” He said. The aids were in and out of his ears in two minutes, back forever in the box.

“Can I have that in writing?”

We never did get his comment in writing but he did see the point.  You don’t realise what you have until you don’t have it any more.  He persevered with the hearing-aids and even took his life into his hands.  He went into the bank.  He went through the rigamarole of having the loop system switched on and went to the loop setting.  He said it was so peaceful without the background noise.  He was so pleased that people in the office, who have ordinary hearing, are envious.  An advantage.  Yippee!

Have a great week!

 

Debbie Jeffrey

‘Join That Conversation’

www.hearingwellbeing.com