My problem: I talk loudly to be heard. Other people say I am shouting and interpret me as aggressive and abusive. Is this a common perception?

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i say i love you dad and give him a hug , he likes that and he feels loved too . its the best meds around is the word i love you dad !!!
he seems to feel more calm when i say i love you dad . they miss the hugs and loving words .
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We have tried everything with Dad. The problem began with his hearing loss. For years, background noise bothered him so much, it was easier for him to retreat to a world of silence. He spent great amounts of time on the internet, in his own world.

Fast forward many years. Dad has since lost his hearing aids, an almost all his comprehensive abilities, and is rapidly losing his communication skills. He has Advanced Stage Alzheimer's Disease. No matter what I say, or how I say it, to him, the meaning is lost. A year ago Christmas, I bought him a pretty set of pictures which hung from carved letters that read: Family. He opened his gift, saying. "Farm." OK. So we steer away from words now. He wrote captions under some pictures in a frame. On invisible tape, the words he wrote did not make a bit of sense. When I try talking to him about a loved one, he says, "Who's that?" When he tries talking to me, it's all a jumble.

We don't raise our voice anymore, but talk quietly into his ear, sitting close by. We adjust the tone, but these tactics pale in comparison to his raging disease. The one thing we do try is to approach him in a calm manner, smiling. I smile no matter what he says. He loves to chatter, even asking questions. None of this makes sense. I answer by saying, "That's an interesting question!" To which he responds, "What?" By then, he's forgotten what he asked, if he even knew. I do say often, "I love you, Dad!" A while back, he would answer, "I love you, too." Wow. That's as good is it gets.

My Dad used to write for different venues in the community, and composing poetry for loved ones. He used to sit up with me for hours helping me write the perfect college term paper. We no longer hold meaningful conversations. He can no longer understand my question, "How are you today?" But, I do scratch his back, to which he responds, "Ahhhhhhh!" And sometimes, "That feels good." I do try to smile a lot. Sometimes his behavior is so bizarre, this becomes difficult. And sometimes I laugh. Sometimes I cry. Dad is slowly losing his abilities, and we are slowly losing Dad. Still, I will probably go over to the nursing home again today, to say, "I love you, Dad!"

Being able to communicate is a precious ability. Not everyone can do it effectively. And some lose the ability. We need to be especially kind and gentle with those who can no longer do what once was taken for granted. The most important thing, I believe, is to tell them often, "I love you," whether through a smile, eye contact, physical touch, or by the written or spoken words of our mouth and heart.
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My Mom has lost most of her hearing. I too spoke very loud, I thought to be heard. When I sat in on her hearing test, volume wasn't the issue. She had trouble understanding the words. When they said 'dad' she thought they said 'bad' and when they said 'what' she thought they said 'wet'. What she heard didn't make sense to her so she said she couldn't hear me. So no matter how 'loud' I was the words still weren't clear to her. I realized I needed to speak more clearly, directly to her and not talk fast or as I was walking away from her. Since I don't shout now I am calmer and communication is better. Mom is 94 and has lived with us for 14 years, through experience we find what works and what doesn't. Sharing my story has helped me and I hope others will benefit from what I am learning about caring for my parents.
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perception among people who do not have day to day contact with elderly people with hearing loss?
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