wearing noise cancelling equipment in church

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colliegrace
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06 Dec 2023, 8:52 pm

There's been a few church services in recent times where I get sensory overload from the volume. Other times it doesn't bother me at all, but those days in particular it just feels.... a little too much for comfort. To the point I almost question if I'm imagining it. But I'm also clearly not comfortable, so..... yeah.

I bring a bag of fidget toys with me to church and most public places, and in the bag is a pair of noise cancelling ear guards.... they look like headphones, but are absolutely not electronic at all.
I have worn them a few times in church. A couple times even that wasn't enough and I escaped the sanctuary into the other building. The nursery at this time is often empty due to few especially young children, so I can sit in the nursery and watch the sermon on the tv in there. (The sermon is livestreamed.)

I'm always especially nervous about wearing the ear guards in church, since people may think I'm being rude and listening to music.
I brought this up to my pastor tonight. He is aware of my diagnosis, so he said he didn't even think anything of it. His autistic grandson uses the same things in church, after all. (Said grandson has Spiderman themed ear guards.) He also said that if anyone mentions it to him he will tell them it's a non-issue.


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auntblabby
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06 Dec 2023, 9:34 pm

if you got 'em use 'em but NC earbuds are more subtle.



colliegrace
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06 Dec 2023, 10:18 pm

The earbuds just don't do it for me. They help some, but not enough.


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ASD, most likely have dyscalculia & BPD as well. Also dx'd ADHD-C, but don't think it's accurate.
RAADs: 104 | ASQ: 30 | Aspie Quiz: 116/200 (84% probability of being atypical)

Also diagnosed with: seasonal depression, anxiety, OCD


auntblabby
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06 Dec 2023, 10:27 pm

my sweetie says that your idea of wearing NC headphones in church is an excellent idea. :idea: she does likewise.



Campingbare
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06 Dec 2023, 10:32 pm

I use 30 dB soft ear plugs when I am in a noisy area. I have a small plastic case to carry a pair and keep them clean. Sometimes I forget they are in until I put my head on my pillow! My wife pointed out to me (afterwards) that I had worn them during our wedding ceremony!


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auntblabby
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06 Dec 2023, 10:48 pm

if you don't mind, can you tell me what types of noises you find most noxious? is it percussive noises or droning noises? if it is the former, there are musician's earplugs that have a piston in them that closes when loud sudden sounds come through but remain open to let in speech.



colliegrace
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07 Dec 2023, 3:52 am

I don't think it's the instruments. More it's just.... idk. It feels like the microphones and amplified voices and stuff are just a tad louder than I can handle. But everyone else seems fine.


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RAADs: 104 | ASQ: 30 | Aspie Quiz: 116/200 (84% probability of being atypical)

Also diagnosed with: seasonal depression, anxiety, OCD


JamesW
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07 Dec 2023, 7:31 am

Wear your headphones with confidence and with joy. Don't worry about people being rude. They're probably also complaining about people's wheelchairs blocking the aisles. Or about those people who spend the whole mass looking at their phones (what they're actually doing is following the order of service on a digital missal, rather than a paper one).


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ToughDiamond
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08 Dec 2023, 11:05 am

I'd say go ahead and brazen it out. I expect in time the self-consciousness will pass. You're not doing any harm. Even if you were listening to music you wouldn't be doing any harm unless the sound was leaking out and distracting people. If you get any flak you could always use Matthew 7:1 to counter it.

Having said that, I probably wouldn't dare. But then I rarely go to a church service, so when I do, I don't like to take liberties on my first day. First impressions count for a lot. It's different if I start to see a place as my home, where I would feel I had more rights.



MatchboxVagabond
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13 Jan 2024, 9:36 pm

ToughDiamond wrote:
I'd say go ahead and brazen it out. I expect in time the self-consciousness will pass. You're not doing any harm. Even if you were listening to music you wouldn't be doing any harm unless the sound was leaking out and distracting people. If you get any flak you could always use Matthew 7:1 to counter it.

Having said that, I probably wouldn't dare. But then I rarely go to a church service, so when I do, I don't like to take liberties on my first day. First impressions count for a lot. It's different if I start to see a place as my home, where I would feel I had more rights.

Yes, although it's probably also not a bad idea to talk to the preacher about it ahead of time. If they're at all good at their jobs, they should be both OK with it and willing to stick up for people attending with various need of accommodation. This is probably easier the more progressive the Church is in general though.

When I was a kid, the first place I came across anything gluten free was the gluten free communion wafers that were available for those that couldn't handle the gluten in the regular ones. And the grape juice for the kids and those with alcohol issues.



CockneyRebel
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13 Jan 2024, 9:53 pm

If that's what's right for you, you should do it. Who cares what other people think.


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