Partner Support Question

Discussion in 'Support' started by Cloudberry, May 13, 2015.

tinnitus forum
    1. Cloudberry
      Procrastinating

      Cloudberry Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2012
      Does anyone else have difficulty getting their partner to recognize their T as a real concern? Mine, who ironically already has a low base level of T from too many concerts in his youth, sometimes makes me feel like I’m being a hypochondriac when I worry whether a sound or event is too loud. I don’t mean to make him sound like a bad guy at all (he’s not!), I just think he has a much more relaxed approach to a condition that he very easily has habituated to years ago. Regardless, I often have to explain that what isn’t too loud for people with “healthy” ears is often uncomfortable for me, and am left with the impression that he thinks I’m overcompensating or something -- which I am, since my ears are especially vulnerable. He doesn’t seem to have noise sensitivity quite like I do (or ETD, which I also suffer from), so perhaps that’s a large part of it. We both get fleeting tinnitus spikes (when the T goes off the charts loud for 20 secs or so) and once when I asked what he’d do if his fleeting T spike became permanent, he simply said, “Well, if it’s something I couldn’t change, then I’d just have to adjust to it.” The variance in people’s response to T is interesting to say the least. Anyways, I was just wondering/venting… Yet another frustration of this condition. Thanks for reading. :)
       
      • Good Question Good Question x 1
    2. RicoS
      Confused

      RicoS Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Netherlands
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Stress or Acoustic trauma
      My girfrliend is very supportive. She is always carefull not to make a lot of noise if dishes and glasses. She also has T but her brain totaly blocks it. When she is looking for it she says it is realy realy loud. But the understands that I hear it most of the time and I am soundsensitive too so she tries not to make to much of noise when I'm around.
      Time to get married :LOL: she is the best...14 years together already so it's about time :popcorndrink:
       
      • Like Like x 3
      • Optimistic Optimistic x 1
    3. 500_miles
      Depressed

      500_miles Member

      Location:
      EU
      Tinnitus Since:
      04/2015
      I was a wreck (still am) when it appeared a month ago... he left shortly after :(
       
      • Hug Hug x 2
    4. Cloudberry
      Procrastinating

      Cloudberry Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2012
      Hi RicoS,
      That’s wonderful that your partner is so supportive and accommodating regarding your T. Mine will take care not to make too much noise, but I have caught him sounding frustrated when I ask him to turn down the stereo and he occasionally gets frustrated at my choice of ambient noise to help me get to sleep… other things here and there as well but I don’t want to sound petty. By and large he is supportive –as in, he understands that this is a legitimate condition that I really struggle with – but there have been many moments where he thinks I’m overreacting and it just makes me feel even more alone. I recently had a spike that has mostly subsided from attending a concert (too loud despite my earplugs); it put my T at a new level that I was uncomfortable with and I started to freak out all over again. His response was that I was hyper-fixating on it and that I needed to chill out. True – yes :) – but not exactly the most sympathetic response. Anyhoo, I just wish he understood how I feel about this condition that we both share. I don’t want to be babied but would like him to understand that I’m not overreacting nor is it all in my head (well, I suppose it really is but you know what I mean!). :) P.s. I totally understand when you say it’s about time to tie the knot. My partner and I just recently got engaged after being together nearly a decade. Stay well!
       
    5. Cloudberry
      Procrastinating

      Cloudberry Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2012
      Hi @500_miles,
      I’m so sorry that he left you during a time when you clearly could use all of the support you could get. I know when I first got T back in 2012, I was a nervous wreck for many weeks – couldn’t eat or sleep and had difficulty at work – so I really sympathize with you right now. I’m sure you’ve read this a thousand times, but it’s true: you will eventually habituate and life will start to normalize once again. I didn’t believe it back at my onset. In fact, a friend of mine even told me as such (that I WOULD feel better again one day), but I refused to believe her… until one day, I realized the T wasn’t front and center of my entire day. From there, things improved, although life with T isn’t a constant upward trajectory. There are setbacks and progress can seem painfully slow, but please hang in there. Hugs to you!
       
    6. Dr. Nagler

      Dr. Nagler Member

      Location:
      Atlanta, Georgia USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      04/1994
      Perhaps you might point your partner to my wife's piece on "Tinnitus Spouse Survival." I am attaching it to this post.

      All the best -

      stephen nagler
       

      Attached Files:

      • Like Like x 3
    7. Cloudberry
      Procrastinating

      Cloudberry Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2012
      Thank you, @Dr. Nagler. I'll definitely have my partner take a look at your wife's write-up... in fact, we'll read it together. Will hopefully give us both some much needed perspective. All the best to you, too.
       
    8. Dr. Nagler

      Dr. Nagler Member

      Location:
      Atlanta, Georgia USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      04/1994
      Terri and I have been best friends for forty years now. All I can say is that one of us has excellent taste!
       
    9. Kathi
      Balanced

      Kathi Member Benefactor

      Location:
      NJ/USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      10/30/2013
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      HFHL and stress
      Thank you @Dr. Nagler but also, thanks to Mrs. Nagler. I don't think I understood the depth of your suffering until I read your spouse's wonderful "Tinnitus Spouse Survival". You and Mrs. Nagler are an inspiration. I am fortunate that my spouse is very supportive. He has intermittent tinnitus from years of working with air compressors and other heavy equipment--along with riding a motorcycle for 40 years with no ear protection-- but is very habituated. He only needs to turn his attention elsewhere and 'the howling wind in his ears" (that's how he describes it) vanishes. He does understand the difference in our tinnitus but he refuses to ever let me think I am afflicted or disabled. His wonderful support helped me to get to where I am today--along with a very caring primary care physician, your very good advice about having a strategy and some of the members here. I still hear my tinnitus most of the time (except on low T days) but I carry on with life. I sit hear typing and my head is hissing but I'm okay with it. I'm going to be a grandmother tomorrow--(they schedule these things these days--quite a change :).

      I habituated my reaction and sometimes I think I'm on my way to habituating my perception as there are many times that I am not aware of my tinnitus--even when it's loud. I'm thinking that minutes of unawareness will eventually become longer times. If not, well, I'll still manage.

      Best to you and your very astute spouse.
       
    10. Dr. Nagler

      Dr. Nagler Member

      Location:
      Atlanta, Georgia USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      04/1994
      Thank you for your kind words, Kathi.

      You know, the depth of my own suffering does not make me an authority on anything but the depth of my own suffering. I get that. But there is a very powerful movement afoot to deny me even a place at the table. And I confess that I really resent that. Because if nothing else, I have paid the price of admission ... indeed I have paid it in my own blood, sweat, and tears.

      So I wish the naysayers would just shut-up already. If they do not like what I have to say, then they do not have to listen.
       
    11. Kaelon
      Wishful

      Kaelon Member Benefactor Team Tech Team Awareness Team Research

      Location:
      Boston, Mass.
      Tinnitus Since:
      11/2014
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Muscle Spasms
      I apologize for the tangent, but since you brought it up, can you tell us a bit more about efforts to deny you a place at the table? Your writings describing each person afflicted with Tinnitus as an "authority" in their own right have been very inspirational and supportive for me, and given your extensive personal and professional experience with habituation and cognitive behavioral neuropsychotherapy, your personal perspectives on your life's journey through this condition are extremely valuable. Not to mention your past leadership in the American Tinnitus Association, which in and of itself speaks volumes of your commitment to the community.
       
    12. Dr. Nagler

      Dr. Nagler Member

      Location:
      Atlanta, Georgia USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      04/1994
      I would prefer not to. It is ugly and hurtful to me. Like my own pain somehow does not count because - thanks to my wife and TRT - I have managed to overcome it.
       
    13. Mahr
      Tired

      Mahr Member Benefactor

      Location:
      The Netherlands
      Tinnitus Since:
      2011
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      unknown, probably hair cell damage
      Last post written 1,5 years ago but the q remains actual:
      For those of you who have a partner, how do they deal with you having a T?
       
    14. volsung37

      volsung37 Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      2014
      My partner is very supportive. She doesn't really understand the condition (who does?). Sometimes I probably hurt her as the condition can make me tetchy.
       

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