Husband's hearing loss is driving me batty!

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Hubby is 63, has had about 75% hearing loss in his right ear due to an untreated infection many years ago. Now his left ear is getting bad--I find myself shouting at him all day. One of my kids said, the other day "Mom, why are you talking so loudly??" and I realize that it's because hubby cannot hear me when I use my "normal voice". He wears headphones when he watches TV to hear, so all other sound is blocked out. I have to find him to talk to him--I can't call out from another room. The kids will not leave the grandkids with him b/c he doesn't hear them. He also is kind of checked out, mentally, so he stopped "listening" to me years ago. This bothers me, but I have grown used to it. He can't hear the doorbell, the phone, the oven timer going off, sirens when in the car, dialogue on TV and normal toned conversation. He says "What?" "What?" over and over. He refuses to get his hearing checked b/c he says that his hearing is fine, the rest of the world mumbles. The ENTIRE rest of the world??? His mother is almost stone deaf, and her hearing aids drive her nuts because they pick up a lot of ambient sounds. He has not had his hearing checked for 25 years, certainly there's some better technology out there!! I have laryngitis today and trying to talk to him has been impossible--I have to write down what I want to say. I'm not totally w/o a voice, and my kids can hear and understand me, but tonight I hit the wall about this stubborn man who refuses to take care of this. He misses EVERYTHING. He's the dude in the theater going "What did they say??" really loudly b/c he misses 90% of the dialogue. Who else has dealt with this?? Some of this is genetic, I know, but not all. I told him all I want for Christmas is hearing aids for him. HE doesn't see that this behavior makes him look 90..and he's only 63!


Sometimes I've just said "I'm not going to ruin my vocal chords and speak any louder." Period.

I have a feeling he wouldn't wear hearing aids if you did get them for him; he's probably by now used to not hearing ambient noise and that might be too distracting and upsetting.

Sounds silly but you could text him or write out your message, perhaps on a tablet rather than something larger.

I think this is a problem that a lot of people face b/c elders often just won't wear their hearing aids. After seeing my father struggle to get them out, I understand why. I was actually concerned they might be stuck in his ear.
Tell him they have some wonderful hearing aides now that people actually like. My ex didn't want to get hearing aides. He was in his mid-60s. I encouraged (aka nagged) him, so he finally relented. After he got them, he wouldn't go anywhere without them. He didn't realize how much he had been missing out on.

It was easier on me, too. He didn't accuse me of mumbling and not talking plain after that. He was always mad at me for him not hearing. I was glad that I finally didn't have to get right in front of him so he could see me talk. Saved a lot of wear on my nerves. He went to Beltone. They were expensive, but worth it.
There is a new hearing aid thatnfits entirely within the ear canal, nothing over tge top of the ear. These do not even have to be removed to shower or sleep. Maybe he would go along with that sort of device.
Thanks for the help! I was venting, I know, but he's only 63 and by no means in his dotage! I HAVE written down things on papers and held them up for him to see. He gets really, really angry when "bugged" about his hearing loss....but it is quickly becoming a real hot-button issue. I woke up this am with total laryngitis, I can't make a sound. So I WILL have to write down anything. I know that seeing his mom be so resistant to h/as and pretty much never wearing them....and the fact that our insurance doesn't cover the cost...PLUS he still thinks he 18....I think also if I get my kids on board to talk to him, esp the 2 who are drs.....THEM he will listen to!!!
Midkid58, search the internet for names of famous people from his generation who wear hearing aids.... maybe someone who he really liked.... example, Bill Clinton wears hearing aids now and same with singer Huey Lewis.
Even John Boy of the Waltons wears hearing aides. Richard Thomas (John Boy) has had serious hearing loss for many years.
Midkid, maybe it is time to give in; since he is essentially living as a deaf man just begin to treat him that way. Stop raising your voice to try to speak to him, and investigate doorbells, alarms and other devices geared toward the deaf community. It may distress him enough to seek help, if not at least it should relieve some of your frustration.
Having "the talk" with someone experiencing hearing problems can be uncomfortable for a lot of people. It's a very sensitive topic and a lot of the excuses you've experienced here are quite common amongst people who haven't quite accepted their hearing loss or come to terms with it yet.

Funny this popped up today---this is still a huge issue at home. I finally just moved out of our bedroom b/c he has to have the TV on 24/7 when he is home and it is LOUD. I have given up trying to get him to get help. He refuses and makes it be about me being a nag. Let him go deaf, He's missing the most wonderful sounds in the world--our grandkids little voices. He doesn't care who wears hearing aids, he will not now nor ever even try them. Period.
I feel stressed just reading about your husband, Midkid; but really sad to read this last post. Don't give up hope or give up on him! - but I do honestly feel for you. It's partly knowing that hearing is about brain function as well as the ear itself, and the longer he leaves it untreated the harder it will be to restore. It's partly the mental scars of adolescence in a house where both parents were going deaf, and couldn't hear each other, and blamed one another for not speaking up - ugh!!! And it's also that one of my closest friends, and she's only around 60, just rang me in a panic to ask "what have you got? What's wrong?" "Sorry? What are you talking about?" I asked her. "Your voicemail, you said you've got something!" My mind went blank. Then I remembered: I'd called her on Wednesday, and Wednesday nights she goes swimming, every week. My message was "sorry, I forgot about swimming." This friend is getting increasingly annoyed with her husband, who's in his 70s, because he won't do anything about his deafness. But, so, what is it that she dreads so much that she won't listen when it comes to her own? I have gently tried to say something before now. She got very grumpy indeed so I left it.

About you being a nag... Nag, eh? Sigh.

No. A nag is a person who harps on endlessly and impatiently about trivial or insoluble grievances. Not someone who expresses her frustration about something that is not trivial, not insoluble, and is just as important to the person she's asking to do something as it is to her herself.

I don't suppose...

Would you consider booking his 'n' hers appointments at your local audiology centre and just springing it on him as part of a trip into town together? Lead him by example? The worst that could happen is that you get a clean bill of health and he sits in the car sulking.

Keep the conversation going (or start a new one)

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