I just wanted to let you all know my story (at least the part of it that’s already happened; it’s still a work in progress!).
For me, there’s something about being in a public situation that somehow I manage to keep myself together. It’s still SOOO hard, though, so in public situations, here’s what helps. Oh, and my trigger sounds are eating, slurping, swallowing, and in general all slurp-ish sounds made when talking. When someone’s eating and they offer some to me or I have my own snack, eating also masks and helps (me, at least, but I hope it helps you, too)! If they don’t offer and I don’t have food, discreetly covering the ear closest to them helps a little. I try to pour the frustration into a fist clench, so maybe a stress ball would help (I’m trying to get one of those).
I went to an audiologist and am currently trying out hearing aids. Unlike most stories, they’re actually NOT helping me right now. I’ve only had them for a few weeks, and misophonia is a neurological issue (which might take a long time to fix), but the fact is that I haven’t noticed any improvement whatsoever. My audiologist suggested a new thing for me, and I want to pass it onto you because HEARING AIDS ARE VERY EXPENSIVE AND THERE MIGHT BE A BETTER, MORE AFFORDABLE SOLUTION!!! If you have an app that lets you buy music (I’m going to use Spotify premium because it has such a wide selection and I don’t have an apple product), and you’re able to buy wireless earbuds (I’m looking for those right now), it’s a kind of therapy that you can do on your own.
1. Make a playlist of the kind of sounds/music that makes you SUPER happy. You FAVORITE favorite music.
2. Listen to your music twenty minutes before and during a trigger situation (for me, meals, or even really going out in general).
The science behind this therapy is that your favorite music playing at the same time as your trigger sounds are supposed to confuse your brain and tell it that trigger sounds are neutral, and hopefully someday normal and fine.
The hardest part about this therapy is finding the right earbud. Here are some links to different kinds of earbuds I’m looking at right now:
PLEASE let me know if you try any of these and they work well!
I know it’s a lot harder to do the search, but I’ll let you know on any progress that I make so you won’t have to do all the searching! And it’s MUCH more affordable than hearing aids and might actually help! (I haven’t tried it yet, so no guarantee, but this whole thing is kind of unknown to everybody, so we’re learning together!)
There is at least a temporary alternative that also helped me with distraction issues. Resound Relief. It’s basically an app that has the same kinds of calming sounds on it that a hearing aid has, so you can still have access to the sounds of a hearing aid without the insane cost of the actual device. It’s helped me immediately with focusing as well as calmed me down! Really try to explore the app, because it has all sorts of downloadable sounds, and there’s a spot where you can make your own sounds based on the songs and sounds they provide. I DEFINITELY recommend it! Oh, and it’s FREE! It’s amazing.
I REALLY hope this could help you in some way! It’s amazing to think that you’re still persevering, even though misophonia feels like people repeatedly punching you in the face and expecting you to function like a normal human being. I’m also praying that God will heal us, or help us deal with misophonia. Thank you for listening to my random thoughts! I hope it helps! God bless!