Deafinitely Girly | Flashback Friday featured blogger
During the month of September, Healthy Hearing is featuring different bloggers in the hearing loss community. From those across the ocean to parents of children with hearing loss, we'll take a closer look at some of the top blogs and resources available to you! Today's article is part of our Flashback Friday series as we catch up with one of your favorite bloggers from last year!
If you find yourself nodding in agreement as you read Deafinitely Girly’s blog, you’re in good company – and that’s the way she wants it.
“I hope my blog helps people with a hearing loss realize they’re not alone,” the British blogger who prefers to be known as Deaf Girl (DG), said.
Thanks to her effortless writing, they do – and normal hearing people also get an intimate look into what it’s like to be deaf and living in the city. For the past five years, DG has written about experiences such as navigating the streets of London during rush hour traffic, the kindness of strangers and the challenges she encounters on a daily basis due to her hearing loss. Readers get a peek at her sense of humor – “beams at being able to use this word” she writes in parenthesis after using “detritus” correctly in a sentence in a recent posting – along with her strong sense of independence and advocacy for those with hearing loss.
DG was born with hearing loss, but lost more of her hearing when she was a teenager. Now as a “twenty-something,” she wears hearing aids, lip reads and knows a little sign language. While she writes her blog for fun, she also contribues a monthly column to Hearing Times, a website which provides news and information for individuals who are deaf and hard of hearing.
“I started blogging as a way of sharing my frustrations about being deaf,” she said. “I also use it to campaign to improve things for deaf people and also share funny things that have happened to me. It’s something I like doing to unwind.”
One of her recent campaigns includes support to keep hearing aids free through National Health Services (NHS). The NHS is proposing cuts for North Staffordshire adults with presbycusis, or age-related hearing loss. While DG’s hearing loss is severe, her mother received free hearing aids through the NHS a few years ago and she knows that untreated hearing loss among older adults can lead to social isolation, depression and anxiety.
“If the cuts do happen, there’s a good chance that people with age-related hearing losses are going to stay that way,” she blogged earlier this year. “And you have to wonder about the financial implications of that.”
DG admits feeling isolated and incompetent at times because of her hearing loss and acknowledges her hearing aids probably prevent more of that than she realizes. She said the hearing aids she received through NHS two years ago – her seventh pair since the age of ten – have given her back “sounds like phone ring tones, cats meowing, London Aunt’s doorbell and the very smallest hint of office chit-chat.”
“You can pay for hearing aids privately but I think my hearing aids are wonderful and I really can't say enough good things about the service I get through my local audiology department.”