You come home with the shocking diagnosis—you have a hearing loss. The first reaction of your hearing family members is to pressure you into getting hearing aids.
Family members, resist this temptation. This is not the right time for a person with hearing loss to get hearing aids. The truth is, multitudes of hearing aids lay abandoned in dresser drawers—unwanted and unused—because family members pressured hard of hearing people into getting hearing aids before they were ready. Let me explain why in relation to the grieving process.
Denial: Your wife drags you in to have your hearing tested, and hopefully fitted with hearing aids. However, as far as you are concerned, it is a total waste of time because you know you still hear perfectly fine, so you don’t need hearing aids.
Family member, put yourself in the hard of hearing person’s shoes. Would you wear hearing aids if you “knew” your hearing was still okay? Of course not! Thus, if you “force” your spouse to get hearing aids, he will often just give his new hearing aids a cursory trial, take them home, toss them in a dresser drawer, and forget all about them.
Anger: In this stage you are mad! When you are mad, you are not thinking rationally. You notice that people aren’t speaking up. It’s them, not you. You don’t need hearing aids! People just need to learn to speak up properly!
Bargaining: You have now accepted the fact that you have a hearing loss, but you “know” this loss is going to be temporary. You are going to work a deal with the doctors, or maybe even with God Himself, to get your hearing back. Since your hearing loss is going to be temporary, why should you waste good money buying hearing aids?
Depression: When none of the above works, you become depressed. Since you are depressed, you feel that life is no longer worth living, so what difference does it make whether you hear better or not? Thus, you still won’t bother with hearing aids.
Acceptance: Finally, however, you begin to realize that you want to live life to its fullest. It is at this point that you are ready to do what you need to do in order to hear better. Now is the time for you to hurry to your audiologist for your new hearing aids, because now you are finally ready, and willing, to wear them.