Mini Blog Series – 1. Love and trust

Being hearing impaired can be isolating. And living with deafness in a hearing world can, so often, separate us from the normal and everyday social engagements – shopping, travelling, meeting in cafes, or going out for a meal. Even within our own family environments or homes, we can feel apart from the day-to-day activities and struggle to cope. There are times when it’s simpler just to say: “Oh I don’t feel like going out today.” We find a seemingly good excuse why we can’t do something – yet the basis for not doing is not hearing!

Finding new friendships through volunteering

Over the years since I became a Peer Support Volunteer for Hearing Link Services, I have discovered a new way of living! That might sound like a hugely bold statement – but it is true.

I have found new friendships, a new community of people, who like myself, fully understand the difficulties facing the hearing impaired in a hearing world.

Trust and love have become the cornerstones of my volunteering friendships. I trust the people I work and liaise with knowing I can share my anxieties, worries, and everyday concerns.

I have come to love being in the company, whether in person or online, with the other Peer Support Volunteers and with the amazing staff at Hearing Link Services and Hearing Dogs.

My confidence has grown, and this has taken me down new and exciting paths. And, that confidence doesn’t just remain within the boundaries of my volunteering roles, it spreads out into the rest of my life.

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Being deaf and living life

I will never say I enjoy being deaf! Of course not! But there is a paradox, an irony, that the very fact of being deaf has given me a new group of friends, of people who I love being with.

And, in my day-to-day life I retain that confidence – it means I don’t say: “Oh I don’t feel like going out today”. It means I say: “Today I am going to trust myself and love what I do.”

My deafness doesn’t define me – but the love and trust of others who are hearing impaired, and understand, certainly does.

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If you would like to get involved with one of our services and potentially expand your community and support network, you can find all of the services we offer here.