Should You Factor in Tinnitus in Potential Career Paths?

Discussion in 'Support' started by Extremity, Nov 22, 2021.

    1. Extremity

      Extremity Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Hearing loss
      Hello, I recently graduated from university. I have had moderate to severe tinnitus for about 4 years now with mild SNHL. I don't really know what to do for a career yet. I'm getting this tendency to "limit" myself to certain paths that would be more tolerable/less stressful to do because of the mental toll tinnitus has on me.

      I'm not even referring to like factors such as noise exposure, but more like if I have to deal with the mental stress of this condition, is it really a good idea to be chasing a "dream career", that if attained could lead to more suffering and stress if I become too overwhelmed?

      I don't know if I will be able to handle the impact tinnitus has on me on top of a stressful job.

      Any advice? Should I really be factoring in tinnitus?
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    2. Matchbox

      Matchbox Member

      BC Canada
      Tinnitus Since:
      August 2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise Induced, Prednisone (drones), Barotrauma (distortions)
      Welcome to my life right now.
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    3. Simon85

      Simon85 Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      Nov 2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Probably noise exposure, but unknown.
      There are a few ways of thinking about this. On the one hand stress in a job can make the tinnitus louder. On the other hand if you’re doing something you enjoy you’re more likely to be engaged with it and that’s a good tinnitus distraction. Also, it’s not just the work task that can make things stressful. I’d argue that the organisational culture and way people interact with each other has the potential to be very rewarding at one extreme and a constant, bullying, back stabbing, stressful operation on the other. In my experience I’d say it’s less the actual job and more the people you work with.

      I’d say go for the job that you want, enjoy and will be engaged in. At the beginning take what work you can in your field of interest to gain experience. Ultimately the goal is to land somewhere with a no assholes policy, engaging work and strong compensation. I hope that helps.
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    4. Damocles

      Damocles Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Ear Infection
      Alright, I'm going to get in early here, before all the fairy tale posts start pouring in, telling you you can't let tinnitus rule your life! and you have to follow your dreams!

      Now here's the thing, that all sounds great on paper (or computer screen) but the cold hard reality is this: you may be living with this condition forever.

      Am I saying this is a certainty, and that we will never have a decent treatment or cure? No. But it's worth considering.

      Here's the other, even colder, harder, and... realisticer...? o_O reality: your tinnitus may get worse during that time that is forever.

      Again, not a certainty, but the odds are against us if the first possibility becomes a truth.

      Now, I'm not a fan of @GlennS. In fact, whatever is the furthest thing from a fan of @GlennS, that's what I am; but on this I'm happy to quote him:

      Because, you see, I think it's an attitude we should all adopt here.

      Just imagine you train 2, 3 years for your "dream job". If it's something quiet, like Accounting, then you have a problem far worse than tinnitus, and I suggest you seek psychological help immediately...

      But maybe it's something else quiet, like eBay selling; then no problem.

      However the scope of quiet "dream" jobs is extremely limited, and most of them aren't really for people who need to make money to live anyway; like being a Writer. Is that a job? ¯\_ ( ¬_¬)_/¯ It's a hobby (imo), and if your family is wealthy enough, you can turn it into a vocation; but that's a lucky minority.

      Assuming you're not in that, then you train those 2, 3 years for your realistic "dream" job, like being a history teacher. What if after those years of training, on the first day you realise you can't hack it? What if, you can hack it, but then you have a severe acoustic trauma, inside/outside the school, and you can no longer work in that noisy environment anymore? That's years of your life you've wasted training and studying etc. and then you're up sh*t creek with a turd for a paddle, because what are you going to be doing for money?

      So in case I haven't already made my position perfectly clear: yes, I think you would be crazy not to factor tinnitus into your future career plans.

      That out of the way, I will now step aside for the inevitable arrival of rainbows and unicorns to this thread.
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