New York Times Article

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Binnebrook
Posts: 72
Joined: Tue Sep 06, 2011 11:18 am
Location: New York

Re: New York Times Article

Postby Binnebrook » Tue Sep 06, 2011 12:07 pm

I saw the article in yesterday's New York Times and was absolutely flabbergasted. And believe me, I'm not easily flabbergasted! I've been living with this sound sensitivity since I was a child, and I'm now 65 years old. It has, to a certain degree, controlled my life.

It started with my reaction to what I thought were my parents' table manners. In truth, I think their way of eating their food was probably no worse than anyone else's, but mealtimes were a torment to me. I would sit with my left forefinger in my ear, elbow on the table, excuse myself from the table several times during the meal to get water, go to the bathroom, any excuse to get away.

To this day I can't stand the sound of people eating, chewing, drinking, swallowing, gulping, even in movies or on TV. I listen to a lot of audiobooks, and there are various mouth sounds that some readers have that I can't stand. I think I married my husband because he also couldn't stand the sound of gum-chewing. I had never before met anyone who reacted the way I did.

My list of "triggers" is not endless, but their effect on my is terrible. In addition to food and chewing noises, I can't stand the sound of a radio from another room, or from a car that's next to me at a stop light. Some railway sounds are actually physically painful to me. I can't bear having someone walking over my head -- this was a real problem for many years, as I lived in New York City for most of my adult life. When someone suggested earplugs to me (I was about 40 at the time), it was a revelation, and to this day, whenever I see her, I thank her.

I also can't stand someone bobbing their foot when their legs are crossed. I sing in a choir, and I dislike it when people bob their heads in time to the music. The effect on me of all these triggers is quite alarming, and can range from mild distaste and annoyance to blind rage, fear, hyperventilation, to the point that I have to leave the room.

Now I live in the country, and life is a bit less stressful. A more recent trigger is a barking dog. I recently had a run-in with a neighbor, someone I've been on good terms with for years, whose dog barks at anyone that passes by his house -- and he leaves her outside, as a rule, so that's a lot of barking. After pleading with him several times, unsuccessfully, to do something about it, I finally called the town animal warden. He spoke to the neighbor, and the neighbor called me up shrieking and bellowing and threatening me. So I called the town police, who went and had words with him. It's unfortunate that the situation escalated to this point. He seems to have become a little more considerate about keeping the dog indoors, but I find myself counting the number of times the dog barks in an hour, thinking that if it seems objectively excessive I'll call the animal control guy again. This seems a bit obsessive of me, but I get tired of wearing earplugs all day long.

All these years I thought I was just being a cantankerous old thing! it's a revelation to realize that this is a recognized, if not well-understood, syndrome or disorder. The ironic thing is that I am an amateur musician and an avid concertgoer. Sound is a source of great joy as well as great distress.

For many years I actually looked forward to the time when my hearing would start to fail and I would not be at the effect of the daily noise burden. What's happened, though, is that my hearing has stayed just as acute as when I was younger, but now I have tinnitus, in addition.

Thank you for your good work on this blog -- I'll be checking in regularly!

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peacefulmouse
Posts: 5
Joined: Tue Sep 06, 2011 7:23 pm

Re: New York Times Article

Postby peacefulmouse » Tue Sep 06, 2011 9:53 pm

"" To this day I can't stand the sound of people eating, chewing, drinking, swallowing, gulping, even in movies or on TV. I listen to a lot of audiobooks, and there are various mouth sounds that some readers have that I can't stand. I think I married my husband because he also couldn't stand the sound of gum-chewing. I had never before met anyone who reacted the way I did.

My list of "triggers" is not endless, but their effect on my is terrible. In addition to food and chewing noises, I can't stand the sound of a radio from another room, or from a car that's next to me at a stop light. Some railway sounds are actually physically painful to me. I can't bear having someone walking over my head -- this was a real problem for many years, as I lived in New York City for most of my adult life. When someone suggested earplugs to me (I was about 40 at the time), it was a revelation, and to this day, whenever I see her, I thank her. ""

OH MY GOODNESS this is a life-changing day for me to read the sharing on this site. I don't know how to use the 'quote' feature on the reply thing so forgive me if it doesn't make sense - I just grabbed a chunk of your post.
I also have the car radio problem. Also the tinny sounds from headphones drive me nuts. We have barking doge behind us and I fantasize about killing them even though I am a compassionate person and in a rational frame of mind would never hurt an animal. I want to strangle their owners for being so unconscious and stupid as to let them bark/yap/whine for no reason.

One of the things I liked most about my now-husband when we were dating was that he was a quiet eater and never chewed gum. He knows to not walk into a room where I am eating chips or anything else noisily but I will often just get up and quietly leave the room if he forgets. I don't want this misophonia to be a dominating factor in our home.

The time I lived in an apartment, I was driven almost crazy by the TV sounds coming through the wall. I asked them to turn it down but that was not a possibility for them. I used to dread coming home and would spend more time out. Now I live in a house but we have to move and I am trying to be positive about finding somewhere quiet. I've found that even when I live in a canyon or in the hills, the sound factor is always an issue, especially with loud voices or music. I don't envy people for their possessions or good looks or fame etc., but I really would love to be like people who are oblivious to noise and other irritants like having the back of their seat kicked or otherwise moved in a theatre or on a 'plane.

I realise I could go on and on (and on). Thanks again for having this forum. It's great to get his off my chest!!

brooklyngirl
Posts: 3
Joined: Fri Sep 09, 2011 1:41 am

Re: New York Times Article

Postby brooklyngirl » Fri Sep 09, 2011 3:38 am

I feel so fortunate to have seen the New York Times article today. I have been affected by (what I now know to be) a mild form of misophonia since I am around 10 years old. I am amazed by how similar my story is to the standard description of misophonia that I read today on Wikipedia, in this Blog, and elsewhere on the internet. My mother and sister are like me, and we used to have arguments at the dinner table when I was young, because our father's noisy chewing & slurping & lip smacking used to upset us. Sometimes I have to leave the room when certain people are eating. I shoot them angry glances, thinking that the will get the hint, but that never works. I used to think that people who made a lot of noise while eating were awful, inconsiderate people, but at the same time I could see that no one else was bothered by it, so I hid my feelings and felt guilty.

When I met my husband I was so relieved that he wasn't a noisy eater. Yet, inevitably, even his eating sounds became an issue since we are together so much. He is the only person in the world that I have ever dared to tell about my "sound issues", but I felt that I needed to do so early in our relationship so that I could get him to understand where I am coming from, and (more importantly) to get him to do what he could to eat more quietly, so that I wouldn't go nuts. I told him when we started dating that I needed him to understand how I felt, and that it was important to me that we should not fight over this issue, because I felt that would make things worse. He was very understanding, and agreed that it would be ok if sometimes I asked him not to eat while we are watching TV or reading together. I feel that I cannot tell him how to eat when we are at the dinner table, since eating during meals is, after all, perfectly normal! I told him that he could consider my sound sensitivity to be irrational, but to understand that it is real nevertheless.

I get really upset in movie theaters when a person near me is eating popcorn. Hearing a dog eat its food makes me want to run screaming from the room (but I don't actually do that). I feel that my ears are just more sensitive to sounds of a certain type, that I "hear better" than most. I have always envied others for being able to take mouth sounds in stride, and not get rattled by them. I was hugely relieved today to find out that I am not alone. In the past I have googled the term "annoying mouth sounds" but I never found anything about misophonia I am so excited to be able to join a fourm and discuss misophonia with other sympathetic people for the first time in my life. I called my mother today to tell her all about what I'd learned on the internet about misophonia, and she was amazed too. I think that just knowing we are not alone, and not crazy, will be a help in itself.

I look forward to communicating with others. I told my acupuncturist about this tonight, and asked if she thought that misophonia could be treated with acupuncture. She is going to look into it for me. It would be wonderful to be free of this over-sensitivity to "mouth sounds" that I have been bothered by for so long.

adah_123
Posts: 99
Joined: Sun Aug 08, 2010 1:46 am
Location: San Diego CA

Re: New York Times Article

Postby adah_123 » Fri Sep 30, 2011 2:06 am

Joyce Cohen's New York Times article (and subsequent Today Show segment) has been translated to Arabic and Spanish and more, and it's been posted, reprinted and paraphrased from Kenya to Canada and all over the states and to all sorts of people of varied beliefs. I googled and got a full 10 PAGES of misophonia articles. We are on our way . . .

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rpalmer
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Joined: Thu Dec 15, 2011 1:33 pm

Re: New York Times Article

Postby rpalmer » Wed Feb 08, 2012 1:43 pm

that article is the reason i know of the term "misophonia" and how i found this website. my jaw literally dropped like many others, i thought i was the only one and felt like an alien. when i was younger i thought i was from another planet because i was so different from everyone i knew. hopefully soon people start taking this seriously like A.D.D. (which i have and is the very least of my worries) and many other diseases insignificant to people with 4s.
god bless us all, Robbie

Eve
Posts: 2
Joined: Thu Aug 07, 2014 3:31 am

Re: New York Times Article

Postby Eve » Thu Aug 07, 2014 4:53 am

I've been looking for an answer for my insane intolerance to certain things. Well, a lot of things. It was only today, when I saw a post on a local listserv that I found this disorder and am completely convinced this is what I have. Since age 10, the sinus clearing, mouth noises my mother and brother exhibit enraged me to the point I ended up leaving the house. After begging them for years to stop making the noises, I just couldn't stand it. I stopped doing family dinners. My brother eats with his mouth open and is loud.

I think I may have ruined my marriage, as my husband has some OCD compulsions which, unfortunately, trigger me -- nail biting, mostly, but other things as well. I've distanced myself physically from him because I am so enraged and repulsed by the behaviors. It seems I spend half my life trying not to see/hear things in the corner of my eye. I sleep with ear plugs in because every little weird sound infuriates me.

I always thought I was just an intolerant, horrible person. It's a relief to find out I'm not the only one, and that it is actually a real disorder.
This has been a horrible thing for me, but at least now I know what it is.

Maybe I can find some way to deal with it. I hope so.

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