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Friendship issues due to hearing loss

Posted by koalagirl
01/08/21 08:15 AM

Hi I'm new to the forum although my daughter was diagnosed around age 6 (she's now 12), she has a moderate to severe hearing loss, has hearing aids but it has been a battle to get her to wear them since starting secondary school last September and only wore them for the first month.

Academically she's doing well at school but she is having a lot of issues with her group of three friends. She says that they are ignoring her and leaving her out. This has been developing during the year and I'm finding it hard to believe that this isn't linked to her ability to hear and follow chat/conversation particularly with the need for them to be wearing masks at various times in the day (although she won't accept that it has anything to do with her hearing). (The other possibility is that the friends are growing away from her, but I don't think that's the case.)

I'm at a loss as to what to do. The social situation is causing her anxiety, not sleeping, tears and mood swings, not wanting to go to school (and she has missed school because of it).

Has anyone else experienced this? Is it likely to be linked to her hearing rather than her former friends freezing her out?

Posted by dxbmum
04/08/21 01:08 PM

Hi. My daughter experienced similar issues. She is almost 15 and has just been diagnosed with a moderate to severe loss in both ears. Since the start of the pandemic, she has struggled at school both academi and socially. Now that she has hearing aids (and is wearing them full time!) she has blossomed. She said that she was missing bits of conversations, interruptimg, speaking too loudly and generally struggling and she now knows that thwas because she couldn't hear what was going on and couldn't back it up with lipreading because of the masks. Her relationships with her classmates has improved dramatically and she is so much happier generally. It had got to the stage where she hated school and was depressed and anxious. All that has now changed and she is back to her normal, happy self. 

Posted by seon
09/08/21 10:41 AM

My daughter had issues about that age. For her part of it was a hidden resentment about her hearing loss.  Once she started mixing with others with varying levels of  hearing loss who just got on with it she was more relaxed with her other friends.  Are there deaf youth clubs or events in your area?

Also is it worth speaking in confidence to her school?   They may have useful suggestions? 

Posted by shoregirl
02/09/21 08:00 AM

My daughter is now 15 and has struggled in social situations all her life. She is has severe to profound loss and wears aids in both ears. 
The thing which we have found that makes life easier (she is one of a group of 3 friends) is to organise for her to spend time with friends on a one to one basis. This has helped her form stronger friendships with both her friends and that also benefits her when they are all together.  I think it is really hard for deaf Kids. Perhaps try and get her involved in a sport where hearing isn't an integral part of what's required. My daughter plays rugby and loves it. Good luck. X

Posted by subeeshrew
15/09/21 09:41 PM

My daughter is 14 today and very similar issues are breaking my heart. She has bilateral hearing loss, moderate to severe and wears hearing aids.

For the last week or so she has been in tears every evening and tells me she doesn't know what's wrong but whilst school tells me she's well-liked at school she simply doesn't seem to be able to forge the friendships she sees others enjoying. When she reaches out to those she wants to have such friendships with there's always an excuse why they can't spend the break with her or spend time with her outside of school. She's a lovely girl full of fun and laughter when they let her but I can't force them to be her friend. She spent the lunch break today, her birthday, talking to the teacher who was on duty😢 She struggles to follow conversations with several people at once but of course other kids don't want to be away from other friends to give here 1:1

She won't get involved with any extra curricular activities at school or elsewhere.

I wish other could be more empathetic and teachers would understand the brave face they see isn't the full story.

Posted by bianna
14/11/21 12:10 AM

My DS has the same problem, he suddenly doesn't want to go to school and has been home last week. I think the pandemic has made things worse, as after a long period online learning, he has lost the connection with his friends, Although they are back at school, he find it hard to go back to his friend group.