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  • Hyperacusis

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    Old 12-29-2016, 09:23 PM   #1
    Join Date: Jan 2016
    Location: Melbourne, Australia
    Posts: 7
    oldie15 HB User

    Hi Anybody

    I suffer from autophony and hyperacusis. Most people have not heard of the former, some have heard of the latter but not generally non-medical people unless they, too, are sufferers. Hyperacusis is an abnormality in hearing where ordinary sounds become loud to the point of being painful. Many things - restaurants, coffee shops, clattering of cutlery and, for some people, loud voices - can trigger distress.

    Today I was invited to have lunch with a friend whom I have known for about 35 years. She has a really very loud voice but it has been only since this past September, when my hyperacusis became worse, that her voice has become painful to me. When she invited me I said, over the phone, that she had a loud voice (she was a teacher and I thought I was not telling her anything she did not already know) and would she be able to talk a bit more softly.

    When I arrived today she asked if I would like a cup of coffee (I have a dryness disease also so this was considerate). She proceeded to put the coffee in the cup but too much for me. I asked if I could do it and she initially refused then banged the cup and coffee jar down on the bench, told me to do it myself, told me she has been 'extremely offended' by what I had said about her voice, had even spoken to a couple of people about it and stated that she would not be 'controlled' by me (as in, my wanting to make my own coffee and my asking her to talk more softly if she could). I could not believe the reaction. The upshot of all this was that she told me she thought I should go back home, I agreed that would be best, I drank the coffee (not daring to ask for milk) said 'Thank you for the coffee' and 'I'll let myself out' and cried all the way home (16 or 17 km).

    I have no one to talk to about this. I wondered if some of you who read this could tell me what you think - really honestly what you think - as I need to know if what I said and did would be considered objectionable by most or a lot of people and thus how to behave/not to behave around people in general. Is it best if I just don't socialize or socialize and just bear the pain, though that in itself is a problem as I think exposure to too-loud noise (too-loud for me) may be why I have become worse.

    Thank you for reading this.

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