Coping with the Guilt — My Tinnitus Is My Fault

Discussion in 'Support' started by Allan1967, Oct 19, 2019.

    1. Allan1967

      Allan1967 Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      1997
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Ear infection
      My tinnitus is my fault. I ignored my gut instinct not to go ahead with an ear operation.

      My tinnitus got worse a year ago following my greed for an oversized piano.

      My tinnitus got worse again following getting an ear infection after I picked and prodded at them recently.

      How do you deal with the guilt?
       
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    2. Star64
      Kick ass

      Star64 Member

      Location:
      Melbourne Australia
      Tinnitus Since:
      2001
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise induced
      I know the feeling of guilt all too well, this is because I was consumed with it due to getting myself dependent on a drug that I felt I should have known was dangerous. I beat myself up continuously for months over this, I called myself all sorts of names, believe me I was so nasty to myself that this behavior distressed my family even more.

      I was lucky that I have two psychologists in my family and one good friend that is a nurse/psychologist who is a master of mindfulness and meditation which has been a godsend to me. I was sent this link by her to read when I could barely string two words together due to withdrawal. I have placed the link here as others my find it useful, it is a quick and easy read. I know many on this website struggle with guilt due to the PMs from others.
      https://psychcentral.com/blog/5-tips-for-dealing-with-guilt/

      Here is a snippet of the most important part I think.
      Guilt is one of those emotions that we feel is telling us something important. Be aware that not every emotion, and certainly not every guilty feeling, is a rational one that has a purpose . Is the guilt trying to teach you something rational and helpful about your behavior, or is it just an emotional, irrational response to a situation?

      My friend also kept telling me, that it was important for me to let go of any guilt and forgive myself, especially since she knows helping others was an important core value to me, because how could I show compassion to others if I could not do this for myself. she was right, I just needed to grieve, and show loving kindness to myself first.
      You are a gentle loving soul Allan. Please forgive yourself and focus on the now.
       
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    3. GregCA
      Jaded

      GregCA Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      03/2016
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Otosclerosis
      What operation is that?
       
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    4. Agrajag364

      Agrajag364 Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      09/2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      Guilt is often a symptom of depression. Which can understandably be caused by a very challenging condition. I’m sure your family and friends would tell you not to feel guilty. How can we predict the things that will make our conditions worse? And tinnitus is a bugger for that.
       
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    5. Michael B
      Supportive

      Michael B Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      2011
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Earbuds
      I know I caused my tinnitus from prolonged earphone use. Easier said than done, but I just accept my responsibility. It's tough enough dealing with tinnitus without adding guilt to the equation.
       
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    6. Bill Bauer
      No Mood

      Bill Bauer Member Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      February, 2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic Trauma
      Time is a great healer. Just like eventually a joke stops being funny, eventually the memory of one giving tinnitus to oneself stops generating negative emotions...
       
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    7. Michael B
      Supportive

      Michael B Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      2011
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Earbuds
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    8. MattS
      Relaxed

      MattS Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      06/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Power Tools
      Guilt = an emotion you feel due to perceived harm to another

      Shame = an emotion you feel due to dislike of yourself or your actions

      What you are experiencing is likely shame, rather than guilt. (This may seem a more point, but when you want to know how to deal with the emotion, then knowing which emotion it is can be pretty important).
       
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    9. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Allan1967

      Allan1967 Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      1997
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Ear infection
      Grommits.
       
    10. Michael Leigh

      Michael Leigh Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Brighton, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      April /1996
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise induced

      My tinnitus got worse a year ago following my greed for an oversized piano.


      Most people want to improve on what they have at one time or another and there's absolutely nothing wrong with this, providing they have the financial resources to do so. Whether it's a car, house or in your case an electric piano. I have been an Audiophile since the age of 16 and have upgraded my HI-FI equipment numerous times over the years, striving to improve the sound quality by extracting as much musical information as possible from my vinyl records and CD collection. I am currently waiting delivery of a new Valve/tube amplifier. The excitement of opening up the box, inserting the valves and biasing each one with a volt meter, to receive the right amount of electric current is an Audiophiles dream. Then to sit back and immerse myself in the music as it washes over me. I anticipate and hope it will be pure Audio Nirvana.

      Your tinnitus got worse not because of buying an oversized piano but by listening to it through Headphones. You didn't know the risk but you do now. The same thing happened to me as many others in this forum that got tinnitus due to headphone use. Try not to dwell on this because you can't change what has happened.

      My tinnitus got worse again following getting an ear infection after I picked and prodded at them recently.

      You wouldn't have picked at your ears for no reason and I assume they were itchy and causing you some irritation. Personally, I do not think this caused your tinnitus to increase. I believe it was the Neuromod device that you began using. I did advise you not to use it and preferred that you wait for at least 12 to 18months and try the other treatment that you told me about. However, I do understand your reasons as there have been some good reports about Neuromod. I was just apprehensive about sound being played through headphones into the ears for people that have Noise induced tinnitus, even if the volume is low. Give it time as I believe your tinnitus will improve.

      Try not to dwell on the passed because you can't change it. Look to the future and the positive things that you have with your family and focus on this and your work which you are still able to do. If you haven't printed the articles in the links that I sent you please do so and read them often. As I said they are a form of counselling and will help to reinforce positive thinking. I will place the links below.

      Take care
      Michael

      https://www.tinnitustalk.com/threads/tinnitus-and-the-negative-mindset.23705/
      https://www.tinnitustalk.com/threads/acquiring-a-positive-mindset.23969/
      https://www.tinnitustalk.com/threads/positivity-and-tinnitus.12060/
      https://www.tinnitustalk.com/threads/the-art-of-tinnitus.12066/
      https://www.tinnitustalk.com/threads/staying-positive-with-tinnitus.12069/
      https://www.tinnitustalk.com/threads/standing-tall.12070/
      https://www.tinnitustalk.com/threads/i-would-rather-be-happy-than-right.12084/
      https://www.tinnitustalk.com/threads/life-is-problematic.12317/
      https://www.tinnitustalk.com/threads/try-and-help-yourself.12355/
      https://www.tinnitustalk.com/threads/is-habituation-possible.12758/
      https://www.tinnitustalk.com/threads/the-big-picture.19308/
      https://www.tinnitustalk.com/threads/look-at-what-you-can-do-not-what-you-cant.20372/
      https://www.tinnitustalk.com/threads/a-change-of-lifestyle.20643/
      https://www.tinnitustalk.com/threads/inspiration.22894/
       
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    11. Chinmoku

      Chinmoku Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      10/2018
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown, possibly medication
      This kind of counterfactual reasoning never makes sense also because you don't see the other path. If you had not put grommets your tinnitus might be even worse, who knows? And it's only human trying to still have interests like piano. Shit happens, as they say, and it is not your fault certainly. I think that reasoning in terms of fault is wrong but if you really have to assign fault I would go with humanity in general where tons of money are thrown at say the next version of smartphones nobody really need and research on debilitating conditions like ours is hardly funded. Part of the medical establishment is also to blame for the careless approach they have in prescribed drugs that end up damaging us.
       
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    12. GregCA
      Jaded

      GregCA Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      03/2016
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Otosclerosis
      I imagine you mean tympanostomy tube surgery?

      If so, the stats for that surgery are extremely good. I wouldn't find anyone guilty of poor judgement for deciding to move forward with it (I imagine your doctor told you the stats given your own situation - stats can change based on each person's medical state).
      You can die when you go fix a cavity too, but nobody will blame you for going forward with that dental work.

      You made a reasonable choice back then. Sometimes reasonable choices lead to poor outcomes. It's called bad luck. There is no protection against that, and nothing you can do to avoid it, so I don't see how you can feel guilt for something that is out of your control.
       
    13. Nanny chocolate

      Nanny chocolate Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Devon
      Tinnitus Since:
      1995
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unbelievable caused by audiologist!
      I think you regret your choices Allan. It’s part of the ‘if only’ way of thinking. If only you had or hadn’t made a particular decision. Somehow a belief that the outcome would have been different. Every day choice has to made and sometimes we get it right. Hugs to you.
      Eve
      @Allan1967
       
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    14. Rogi Cetpla
      Frustrated

      Rogi Cetpla Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Europe
      Tinnitus Since:
      T 2010 / IT 2015 / VIT 2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise exposure / Head trauma
      A lot of us are in the same situation... including myself... I believe the key is looking forward not back...

      "Acceptance of what has happened is the first step to overcoming the consequences of any misfortune."

      William James
       
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    15. Mister Muso
      Inactive

      Mister Muso Member

      Location:
      Scotland
      Tinnitus Since:
      2007 / April 2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Loud music
      This.

      Hindsight is usually 20/20 vision. But we've just got to keep putting one foot in front of the other and move on.

      Be gentle with yourself.
       
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    16. Mister Muso
      Inactive

      Mister Muso Member

      Location:
      Scotland
      Tinnitus Since:
      2007 / April 2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Loud music
      In the words of John Lennon, "Life is what happens to you when you're busy making other plans."

      I love playing the piano too. I bought a gigantic book of classical pieces in February this year, and I started downloading all those Queen songs I always meant to learn. Was having a wonderful time and falling in love with the piano again. Then in April, tinnitus struck. Probably due more to excessive headphone use, and going to a concert without earplugs, than the piano usage. Though now I can't believe how loud and harsh the upright piano sounds without hearing protection.

      After a complete break for 3 months, I limit myself to playing 10 minutes at a time on good days only, whilst wearing ear protection. It's not the same, but it's my new life now, and I still get pleasure out of it to a lesser degree. Got to roll with the punches of life, and take what you can get...
       
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    17. Tybs

      Tybs Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      04/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Fall from stairs
      I got tinnitus right after I fell down the stairs: I was messing around with my phone instead of carefully watching where I was walking.

      Big deal. Mistakes and accidents happen, and some have bigger effects than others. All we can do is learn from them and continue with our life. Not trying to trivialize your T here, but blaming yourself won't help anyone.

      You had a choice to have surgery or not, and you decided not to go through with it as things could go wrong. It is a valid reason, and there is no way to tell what would have happened if you let the surgery get done. Maybe things would have worked out, or maybe the surgeon would have slipped and scarred your brain for life.

      You did nothing wrong. All you can do in the end is accept your current situation and deal with it accordingly. A treatment could come up at some point, until then you can try to focus on coping strategies. Don't give up on yourself: you have a right to live and shine.
       
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