I’m exhausted!

i'm exhaused!

I’ve made it my life’s mission to be compassionate toward people with visual and especially auditory processing disorders.  Why auditory?  Because it’s our most basic sensory unit for communication. Even though I have a daughter who is hearing impaired, my dad’s recent visit has left me exhausted.  It’s not that he’s been demanding or difficult to get along with.  He is struggling with the loss of hearing.

My daughter and I are synchronized.  She is tuned into the tones of my voice and I have made sure that she adapts to other’s needs so that she can survive in the world.  My dad, however, hasn’t reached this level, and after a week, I am exhausted.  I have to look directly at him and almost shout so that he can hear when we talk.  He’s tried hearing aids, and they bothered him, but I feel bad because he is missing out on so much.  I’m also tired and my voice is hoarse.

Why am I writing about this?  Because for the first time, I realized what parenting a child with auditory processing problems can be like.  For my daughter, it was easier.  She learned to read lips at an early age.  She learned to fill in gaps of words she couldn’t hear.  However, a child with auditory learning issues can’t know to do this automatically like she did. It’s not like these kids can’t hear certain tones and fill in gaps.  Students with auditory processing disorders may hear a jumble of noises, the whirring of a fan blade, lose beginnings or endings of sounds, or miss out on huge chunks of information.

Did you know that we take in sounds with our ears but process auditory information in our brains? That’s why it is so difficult to help students overcome auditory processing problems.  And that is also why for the first time, I realized how exhausted the parents of these children are.  For twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week, these parents live the exhaustion I have experienced for one week. I know that my dad is here for a short while, but if you live with a child who struggles to process auditory information correctly, then I can only imagine how exhausting it can be.

My hats go off to all of you today who are experiencing the frustration and exhaustion of parenting a child with auditory processing issues.  Keep in mind, with new research, though, that there is hope.  Unlike my dad, who is losing the ability to take in sound, there are numerous exercises that can build up your bright child’s auditory processing skills.

 

There’s always hope.  However exhausted you may be.

Best wishes,

Lisa

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