Shy? Investigating social phobia…

Social-Phobia Social phobia, also know as social anxiety, is the third largest psychological problem in the world today… This diagnosis has a higher representation among people with hearing difficulties (and other populations segments), than in the average population. This site offers more information:

Background: Katharine Cecilia Peterson (Kate for short, brief presentation further down) has asked me (and others) to join her as a co-therapist for a research project looking into social phobia and the effects of cognitive therapy.

social_phobiaDisclaimer/personal experience: I can not claim expert clinical knowledge regarding social phobia, other than that I have experienced it on my own. To what degree I experienced social phobia is also a subjective matter. Also I am not an expert on cognitive therapy either, other than that of my own experience with such therapy, and it’s effect, regarding my tinnitus (reference to earlier blog posts relating to this matter: No cure for tinnitus, Life gets easier, Difference btw recruitment and tinnitus, Tinnitus cognitive therapy) I was open minded about the cognitive therapy approach, and did all the training by myself, in addition I had three hour long sessions with a professional advisor.

The text after the double line has been copied, translated and adapted from , she writes her blog in Norwegian.

She is a psychologist, and has been a valuable contact for me personally through the years, since I have met her on various occasions/courses, and she works at the place where I received psychological therapy: Nasjonalt Senter for Hørsel og Psykisk Helse. She played a small part (HUGE gratitude on my part!) for my mental wellbeing today, as she helped me get in touch with the right people when I needed it the most. Currently she is heading a research project I will write more about in the time to come (since I am a part of the project, obviously)

Ok, let’s get down to the business at hand 🙂



Read the rest of this entry »

Summa summarum

public-speaking-pic I will in near future speak to a group of people with special interest in CI. This group will consist of both professionals and other fellow cyborgs. In regards to this speech, I was approached by a fellow speaker at the same conference, and she asked about what I would talk about. As I wrote the response I thought this was good material for this blog as well.

Here’s what I wrote:

On the top of my head I think I was in an impossible and very difficult situation prior to the (CI) operation. I felt it was the last straw. It was unthinkable for me to become utterly deaf. There was only one option.

Waiting4Raise The process leading up to the operation was of course heavily influenced by the very long and exhausting waiting-time (more than 4 years). I spent my time as best I could; wrote on this blog, went to shrink, got rid of debts, had more time together with my son, found and lost one girlfriend, then found (and kept) another wonderful girlfriend :-), “worked on” my social network and family. Among many other things…

In the weeks before and after the surgery I wasn’t really worried, had great confidence it would work out. this confidence came from the vast knowledge I had acquired on the (CI) subject in the years prior to the surgery. I was aware there were pitfalls, but knew that if anything went wrong, they would quickly operate the other ear.

The surgery was relatively successful, apart from some problems with balance and sporadic tinnitus attacks. The problems with balance slowly dissipated, with a grand finale of a short hospitalization due to a complete failure to stand on my two feet one morning (3 days later I was good to go again).

Post-surgery the hardest part for me has been the tinnitus. In some periods my energy has reappeared in short glimpses, which delighted me greatly. But most of the time has been a struggle up-hill in regards tot he quality of the sounds which are still very much out of whack.

Tolerance for sound has been the greatest personal victory. The struggle isn’t completely over, but mostly I am able to keep the CI on all the time.

Tinnitus remains the big bad wolf. But with tinnitus-mastering course (type stress management course), a strong psyche and as a (very lucky in a global perspective) recipient of benefits from the Norwegian state I have reached all my goals. [more text after image!]

house I have built a good relationship with my girlfriend, made a good relationship with a new extra son, moved in with girlfriend and totally renovated the new apartment. It has been exhausting, but with the right delegation of my resources and focus, and the newly learnt ability to say “no”, I managed to pull through.

It is with great expectation and with great belief in the future I now look forward to becoming a bilateral cyborg later this year.

These things just takes time…

Two announcements in Norwegian (to my Norwegian readers)

Til mine norske lesere:
Jeg skal på to konferanser i den nærmeste fremtid og håper å se dere der også! Vi må snakke sammen! 🙂

Konferanse 1:

“Å leve med Cochlea Implantat (CI)
– kurs for voksne pasienter og deres pårørende”


v. Lærings- og mestringssenteret Rikshospitalet

RH logo

Tid: 1. og 2. september 2010
Sted: Nasjonalt senter for hørsel og psykisk helse, Sognsvannsveien 21, Bygning 3, Gaustad.

Temaer: CI-prosessoren og programmering ved audiofysiker, utprøving av utstyr, tekniske hjelpemidler, brukererfaringer, utfordringer, forventninger og mestring ved psykiater, Hva er viktig i det daglige/hvor kan man få hjelp/rettigheter og om nyttige nettsteder ved audiopedagog, info fra Hørselshemmedes landsforbund (HLF) og fra Briskeby.

Det vil bli foredrag, gruppesamtaler og plenum. Det vil bli rikelig anledning til spørsmål.

For påmelding ta kontakt med:

Ellen Glåmseter
Lærings- og Mestringssenteret,
tlf.: 230 70820 / mob.: 995 55 339, e-post:

Konferanse 2 (mer informasjon følger etter bildet):


Sted og tilrettelegging

· Erfaringskonferansen vil bli holdt i lokalene til Briskeby Skole og Kompetansesenter AS i Lier.
· Vi har bl.a. et auditorium med plass til 80 personer, utstyrt med hørselsteknisk utstyr og teleslynge.
· Skrivetolker vil oversette direkte fra engelsk til norsk.

Dagene vil inneholde forelesninger av:
· Education tutor Mrs. Diana F. Harbor, Ear Foundation, Nottingham, England
· Audiofysiker Ole Tvete Øre-nese-halsavdelingen på Rikshospitalet
· Prosjektleder Marion Eriksen fra prosjektet ”CI-det du hører”
· Psykomotorisk fysioterapeut og bruker Inger Anita Herheim
· Audiopedagog Wenche Helsingeng, Briskeby Skole og Kompetansesenter AS
· Spesialpedagog Anne Elisabeth Strøm, Briskeby Skole og Kompetansesenter AS
· Overlege Marie Bunne Øre-nese-halsavdelingen på Rikshospitalet
· Audiograf Gøril Haukøy, Medisan AS
· Brukere
· Nærpersoner

· CI-brukere og deres erfaringer med rehabiliteringssituasjoner i Norge
· Nærpersoners kunnskap og opplevelser
· Medisinsk oppdatering – hva er nytt?
· Tekniske nyheter – hvordan kan vi ta i bruk tekniske hjelpemidler?
· Pedagogisk rehabilitering
· Høretrening

Konferansen starter med registrering og kaffe 21. oktober kl 09:00. Forelesningene starter kl 10:00. Konferansen avsluttes 22. oktober kl 16:00.

NB! Deltagerne på konferansen må selv bestille hotellrom

Briskeby har imidlertid reservert rom på følgende hoteller:

Best Western Globus Hotel  (tlf: 32 89 04 00)
– 750,- per enkeltrom  per natt.
– 950,- per dobbeltrom per natt.

Rica Park Hotel (tlf: 32 26 36 00)
– 795,- per enkeltrom per natt.
– 1045,- per dobbeltrom per natt.

For å få disse prisene må du oppgi at du skal delta på CI-konferanse på Briskeby.

Elektronisk påmelding | Hvor er Briskeby?


Aud Eli Thjømøe
Telefon:              32 22 65 21
Mobil:                  91 78 73 70

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