We are so lucky to be able to share Erin Wiggle’s heartfelt story about her husband, Adam. Adam serves in the Navy and has an Oticon Medical Bone Anchored Hearing System (BAHS), the Ponto.
Erin shares Adam’s account of his ordeal of chronic ear infections and multiple surgeries throughout the years that finally led to permanent hearing loss of his right ear. In her post, she leads us through Adam’s journey to getting his Ponto. Adam adjusts his life well with his Ponto. However, he reveals that one of his adjustments is dealing with the insensitivity of strangers. Adam said, “The constant questioning from strangers has left me a little bitter.”
Adam’s story teaches us a lesson. It’s a lesson that many of us who don’t have hearing loss or know someone who has can learn. Adam is a confident young man with well respected goals for serving our country. Yet, many strangers aren’t aware of bone anchored hearing systems and their questions may be unwelcome. Erin compares this to asking a person in a wheelchair.
“To me, asking Adam what ‘that thing’ is on the side of his head or details about his hearing impairment is like asking a stranger how they ended up in a wheelchair or lost their limb.”
It’s true that one would never think of approaching a stranger in a wheelchair and asking how that person got to that condition.
To be clear, Adam welcomes questions about his Ponto and wants to educate others about it, especially children. It’s the approach that some strangers take to ask him is what’s bothersome.
The bone anchored hearing system is a proven technology that has helped so many with hearing loss. It’s important for those of us in this community to do our part to share the knowledge and bring awareness and sensitivity to this issue. Here is a good resource for educating others about bone anchored hearing >> BAHS
You can read Erin’s story about Adam’s experience with the Ponto >> HERE
Please leave your comments below on how you have helped bring awareness to hearing loss and bone anchored hearing systems.