Better Hearing Consumer

Featured image for “When Mommy Can’t Hear the Love”
Apr. 18, 2023

When Mommy Can’t Hear the Love

Gael Hannan
A hearing parent hears warning sounds that a hard of hearing parent cannot, leading to some Frightening Mommy Moments. And when my son Joel was small and even when looking directly at me – which was one of his early life lessons – it took work to understand him as his speech developed. (Eventually, as a child of a mother
Featured image for “Hearing Nature: Birdcalls, Hisses and Growls”
Apr. 05, 2023

Hearing Nature: Birdcalls, Hisses and Growls

Gael Hannan
  “Honey, what’s that sound?” “A bird.” “What kind?” “You’ve got to be kidding. I dunno, one with feathers.” On the hiking trails, spring wildflowers are popping up, and I’m grateful for these silent beauties of nature. Hearing sounds out of doors has always been a challenge for me. Nature has no walls to contain sound and no light switch
Featured image for “Sitting Here, Deaf”
Mar. 28, 2023

Sitting Here, Deaf

Gael Hannan
The hearing care professionals joke about us, the people with hearing loss, among themselves. (They do, I know they do!) We’re the people who delay doing anything about our hearing loss for years, yet once we’re used to our hearing aids and cochlear implants, we can’t do without them for a moment. Mysteriously dead batteries cause panic. Hearing aids that
Featured image for “Reframing Your Hearing Loss Narrative (by Karina Cotran)”
Mar. 20, 2023

Reframing Your Hearing Loss Narrative (by Karina Cotran)

Gael Hannan
I don’t know about you, but I’m pretty damn critical about myself. I think everyone is, to a certain extent, but I’ve noticed a pattern where folks with disabilities are more self-critical than folks without any disabilities. It’s almost like we put ourselves up to a higher standard because we don’t meet society’s typical standards. Society doesn’t explicitly say we
Featured image for “An Old(er) HoH Learns a New Trick!”
Mar. 15, 2023

An Old(er) HoH Learns a New Trick!

Gael Hannan
Note: “HoH” is a term that some people with hearing loss use occasionally to describe themselves – usually to other HoHs. It’s an acronym for ‘hard of hearing’, a term that ‘hearing people’ (how HoHs describe people without hearing loss) tend to understand. Sort of, sometimes. (Are you still with me?) I’ve had hearing loss my entire life. I became
Featured image for “Hearing Help: Pay It Forward!”
Feb. 28, 2023

Hearing Help: Pay It Forward!

Gael Hannan
I once was lost, but now I’m found…. These words of renewal from the old hymn can also describe people who have found a new way to live with their hearing loss, free from the tyranny of stigma and frustration, fear and isolation. And when that happens, they often want to share what they’ve learned by paying it forward. Obviously,
Featured image for “The Absolute Basics of Talking with People Who Have Hearing Loss”
Feb. 19, 2023

The Absolute Basics of Talking with People Who Have Hearing Loss

Gael Hannan
It’s not a university level course, or even a highly specialized skill. It simply shouldn’t be that difficult for ‘hearing’ people to communicate well with people like me, the ones who have hearing loss. After all, WE have the hard job – trying to hear and understand what people are saying, especially those with less than stellar communication skills –
Featured image for “Now That I Know (About Hearing, Loss & Hope)”
Feb. 13, 2023

Now That I Know (About Hearing, Loss & Hope)

Gael Hannan
When I look back to my life before I met other people with hearing loss, I can see how they changed my world in ways I never expected. The following tries to express my gratitude for their impact on my hearing journey. _____________ The new baby smiled and thrived, and her parents said, she’s good, she’s beautiful, she’s perfect. But
Featured image for “Taking Back the Power from Tinnitus”
Feb. 08, 2023

Taking Back the Power from Tinnitus

Gael Hannan
This is Tinnitus Awareness Week…and let me tell you, those of us who have it are very aware of it! It’s always there in some form. Soft or screaming, single note or techno-pop, screeching high or thumping low. Or all at once. It follows you everywhere, this tinnitus, like a painful itch you can’t scratch, monopolizing your focus, diverting it
Featured image for ““Have You Got Your Hearing Aid In?””
Jan. 30, 2023

“Have You Got Your Hearing Aid In?”

Gael Hannan
All people with hearing loss have experienced the two most painful words in the hearing loss dictionary—never mind. The hurt at hearing them never gets old, even though we may learn how to respond to them better. But how about that six-word question that plagues every hearing aid or cochlear implant user: “Have you got your thing  in?” This can set off