As a Misophonia sufferer I have always avoided social situations. A crowd is a breeding ground for every known trigger, even some new ones. Standing in a line is distressing, for some reason I always seem to get behind the gum popper or loud talker.
I enjoy an occasional rock concert. A rock concert? Are you kidding? Why would you subject yourself to all of that noise? My son and I share similar taste in music and have discovered attending concerts together is a wonderful bonding experience. I have to take advantage of our time together before he leaves for college.
A concert can be a wonderful experience as long as you are not triggered by the band. We take our time locating our seats then begin to watch all of the crazy people which offers a distraction from most of the triggering sounds. Last year at a Def Leppard show, there was a fan parading around with a British flag cape and matching boxers. Does he really think someone will mistake him for the drummer? There is always the drunk couple dancing before the music even begins. I will never forget the elderly woman in a wheelchair (beer in the cup holder) intentionally trying to run people down. Have you ever heard the phrase “don’t drink and drive?” Maybe that doesn’t apply to wheelchairs? We even watched a young man doing his homework using a flashlight to illuminate his notebook. Who brings homework to a concert?
Once the show begins, the music is so loud that it drowns out the annoying people/triggers around you. As a Misophone I realized the best part of concerts is the intensity of the sound which tends to muffle your hearing for a few days. I know there is an audiologist reading this and thinking, “NO! That is the worst thing you can do!” I would not disagree. However when you spend every waking moment trying to avoid sounds, having your hearing is deadened for a period, is such a welcome relief. I can spend the next few days with added tolerance to sound. Sadly those few days pass quickly and I have resumed full range of hearing.
Enduring a few triggers for a short period was definitely worth the quality time I was able to spend with my baby boy. Sometimes the payoff is worth the risk.