Falling on Deaf Ears

A mother's instinct is usually right. This is my story of the battles, the appointments, the snide comments and coming out the other side. Oh, and anything else to do with life.

Not Unique

on September 29, 2012

Physician of tomorrow

Following on from the conversation on the Forum, I sought advice. I firstly looked on the internet for anything to do with Auditory Processing Disorder (APD). There wasn’t a great deal, but what I did find, I found incredibly helpful. It was describing my son impeccably. So I went and saw a friend who has a deaf child, asking him what I should do next.

He pointed me in the direction of the NDCS, who were very helpful….in fact, they still are! After speaking to one of their Audiologists, I knew what I needed to ask for at the doctors. The Audiologist e-mailed me the advice that they gave me, so that the doctor would take me more seriously (I am trying not to laugh as I type this!). I printed off the e-mail and took it with me to our first of four doctors appointments. The first doctor said that he should have a hearing test at school, and that we would take it from there. My son had, and passed the school hearing test. I went back to the same doctor, who told me that he could obviously hear okay and that he chooses not to listen. He did ask ‘Glue Ear’ questions, such as whether I noticed that he could hear better when he didn’t have a cold. I told him that wasn’t the case, and a quick look in both his ears showed that his right ear drum was dull, but otherwise all was okay. I went home and I cried.

I went back to another doctor, saying pretty much the same thing. This time I was told that my son would grow up to be very successful, because he doesn’t listen to others, and is very strong minded, and so what if he grows up arrogant and ignorant of other people? He doesn’t listen when out and about because he is having way too much fun! Again, I went home and cried.

I decided to try at the doctors one more time. If it failed, I would have to find a doctor that would listen to me elsewhere, or pay to go private. I was that convinced that there was something wrong, I would have done whatever it took. On this fourth appointment, I took his red book, which showed there had been issues since the age of two, and a questionnaire I had found which can be used for guidance and whether APD would be probable. This time, the doctor listened to me and referred my son for assessment.

 

I can’t say I was glad, but it was a relief to be listened to, finally! But, as I had been going through this process, I was learning that there were other parents out there with children with ‘invisible disabilities’ where professionals were ignoring their plights for help. The other parents I encountered were from all walks of life, and like me, they were being treated badly. They felt, like I did, that people thought that the problems were once in a while occasions, not the constant every day battles that we were facing. Society also seemed to think we were looking for scape goats for our child’s misbehaviour. We weren’t. We were looking for answers. Looking for ways to deal with the behaviour we were presented with. Wanting to be heard.

I think this will always be a problem. Even now that we have some answers, I still get well meaning people asking me if I have tried this, that or the other. I still don’t get taken seriously that my son has a problem, and that it is not my parenting.

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3 responses to “Not Unique

  1. listenersmanifesto says:

    I read back through all your posts – they express really well the sense of bewilderment we feel when professionals mislead us – it seems such a contradiction ‘professional’ and ‘mistaken’. Your state of chronic uncertainty nicely mirrors the chronic uncertainty HOH people live with. Nice reading your stuff – it’s reassuring to be reminded that my own chronic uncertainty is not my fault but a reflection of the sadly inadequate ‘state of the art’.

  2. Ingrid says:

    Thank you for your reply. My goal is to let others know that they are not alone. It is a shame that my story is not unique, and although I know that our outcome may be better than others, we still have had to fight to get here today. Very, very rarely is it ‘our fault’, and I often wonder how different things might have been had it been dealt with at the start. I hope to continue to offer reassurance.

  3. […] Not Unique (fallingondeafearsuk.wordpress.com) Share this:TwitterFacebookDiggStumbleUponRedditLinkedInEmailPinterestLike this:LikeBe the first to like this. […]

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