Reply To: Share Your Tips for Coping with Misophonia

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Fellow Sufferer

These reviews really keep me laughing, along with a sob of anguish in the back of my throat. (I won’t let it out, I would never want to cause any of you undo pain of such a sound…)
I know I’m probably not saying anything new, but I am almost 20 years old and I have been suffering with this for almost a decade. I always knew it was a real problem, but I only found out the name of the condition a few years in. I must say, that was validating. I have lived away from home for a couple years already, and it has gotten easier to control myself (I guess I care too much about what others think;p). I am now home due to the Covid-19 pandemic and, boy, my suffering is compounded! This being the case, I have taken to finding my empathy by reading articles and reviews of my fellow sufferers.
The most validating point was hearing that others are also triggered more by one individual. Unfortunately, that individual is my mother. Ironically, my mother has misophonia herself! My private theory is that she chews extra loud to compensate for others’ sounds, but I’m only realizing now that it could actually be me in the way I hear her. Don’t get me wrong, I love my mother and ANYONE’s chewing wields immense power over my self-control. Somehow, she triggers me most to the point where I get angry watching her eat. Sometimes, I find myself watching her in horrible fascination, kind of like watching a murder. Dumb, I know, it makes me well up with an indefinable rage.
Recently, I heard a speaker talking about how he has misophonia and now his kids have it. I hope and pray that my children will never suffer from this affliction and that I can have a healthy marriage and supportive husband despite my disability. This got me thinking in how I can work on my character inwardly to help me manage my condition.
I have tried mindfulness, reminding myself that others are not trying to bother me, and best of all clenching my fists and pinching myself. I think of it as my own kind of cutting, a replacement pain: the harder the pinch, the less aggravating the chewing. Noone even has to know that you are doing this. For me, a great accomplishment is remaining at the family table for long enough that I can still appear somewhat sociable, without exploding or turning my face into a permanent glare of disgust. Recently, I have tried letting the sounds wash over me and telling my mind to allow them to be in their place. Working on my degree in psychology also equipped me with other techniques to get a handle on myself.
Best of luck to all of you, and know that I feel your pain!
Gosh, that felt good to write (even if noone reads this).