We rely on our hearing more than we realise so getting diagnosed with hearing loss can be a traumatic emotional experience. However, just because you’re losing one of your senses that doesn’t mean you can’t continue to live a fulfilling life full of adventure, excitement and possibility. Here, we’ll be discussing how to navigate the five stages of grief that accompany such a diagnosis and in doing so, hopefully helping you find peace on the other side of that journey and accept your hearing loss.
The five stages of hearing loss grief
Denial – At first, it can be tempting to simply deny there’s a problem. Your mind will struggle to accept what’s happening to you and will try to comfort you by telling you everything is fine. This is perhaps the hardest stage to push through but it’s important to be realistic at this point and not to get lost in fantasy.
Anger – “Why is this happening to me?” Is a perfectly reasonable question to ask yourself but it’s important to realise you are not the only person this is happening to. A good way to get over the anger stage is to actually meet up with other people who suffer from hearing loss. This way you’ll be able to appreciate that you’re not alone and you’ll hopefully defuse your anger as a result.
Bargaining – Perhaps the most illogical stage of the process, bargaining is still a perfectly natural stage of the grieving process. This might also be the time you start looking into hearing aids or other ways to restore your hearing. To figure out if you’re a candidate for a hearing aid, start by taking an online hearing test and then booking an appointment with a specialist.
Depression – As your hearing begins to deteriorate you might find yourself struggling with the social situations you once enjoyed. It can be frustrating when conversation starts to become difficult and you can’t communicate with your loved ones the way you once did. Hearing loss can, in some people, lead to an existential loss of identity, which can also lead to anxiety and depression. To avoid this we would always recommend remaining in contact with those closest to you and explaining to them what’s happening to you. If they really love you then they’ll understand. Communication is key.
Acceptance – As long as you’ve not suppressed your emotions and have been able to make it through the other four stages with the help of your loved ones then you’ll inevitably arrive at the acceptance stage. Once you’ve accepted your hearing loss you’ll find it so much easier to deal with and can move on with the next stage of your life with confidence.