by Laine Waggoner, MA, MS
Very little is written about the value of humor when dealing with hearing loss and the way it can contribute to communication breakdown. I discovered for myself that a sense of humor can serve as an invaluable antidote to the inevitable stress, frustrations and anxiety that come with the territory.
People who live successfully with hearing loss must develop the ability to laugh at their mistakes. This helps to make family, friends and coworkers feel more at ease. Using self-deprecating humor to relieve tension and laughing with others is an expression of kinship or social bonding.
In the support groups and workshops that I lead, I use humor to lighten the atmosphere. I can get away with this because I have been living with my own profound hearing loss for more than 45 years.
always get laughs with the jokes and cartoons from “Do You Hear Me?” by
Matthew Schneider, a delightful, laugh-filled book of humor for the hard of
hearing, by the hard of hearing . (Available from: www.shhh.org
and other sources.)
said he dedicated his little gem of a book to the millions of Americans who are
hard of hearing, “because their pursuit of happiness is made much more
difficult due to their disability.”
are some humorous “positive aspects of hearing loss”:
You find you don’t hear what you used to pretend you didn’t hear.
Your friends will trust you with a secret. But, you probably didn’t hear it in the first place.
People appreciate that they don’t have to talk about you behind your back; as long as they keep smiling while they face you.
You can't hear your partner snoring anymore.
If your home is under the flight path of a major airport.
If the teenager next door digs hard rock with 18-inch speakers.
you are asked to mow the lawn, wash the car, clean the garage, take out the
Humor”, Dr. Stuart Robertshaw, professor of psychology and education at the
University of Wisconsin - La Crosse is on a crusade to reduce
“humor-impairment” in people. His following prayer is right on the mark: