After high school, I undertook higher education learning in my second language. I had problems hearing and learning to pronounce certain word (but, to be honest, it's the case in my first language). The thing that helped me the most, and I am not just talking about the immediate effect on learning language, was prononciation classes. In the begining, it was meant to be a single class in an course dedicated for English as a second language student... given to a rather small class. We started 4, and I ended up alone with the teacher few weeks after the first class. I realized that the particular class on prononciation was crucial for me, so did the teacher, so he changed the content of the class to concentrate on that subject. I still had trouble to understand subtilities in prononciation, but the teacher helped me overcome them by showing me pictures of the anatomy of the month (ex: to see where the tongue is placed). The class almost acted as a therapy, and after I could distinguish words better in a sentence.
I can hear well (still have to concentrate a lot) at frequencies 500 to 2000 Hz. I will hear 80% of what a person will say, and 15% of another... but it will radically drop if other people talking in the room or if there is noise (even low). I had hearing aids a few years ago, but they weren't so helpful. I had a student pair taking note for me during my studies, but now I am working and find it harder. I am an analyst programmer, mostly working with men, so it often fall outside my comfort zone (if I could call it like that). I get a strange look from some people when I say I'm deaf, as I can talk to them without hearing aids... and they would blame my lack of concentration for moment where I fail to hear what they say.
I got an evaluation done few months ago to get new hearing aids, and new technologies might give some hope. So, from the thousands of models available... we end up with 2 (it would be slightly more, if I didn't plan on buying a FM system): Naida V and IX. I just started working and paying my debts, so it's a bit challenging for me to come with 5000-7500$ for the aid. I tried asking foundations for money, but it didn't really give result... so I am finally going to get a loan.
I realized, it's too much stress to endure on a daily basis, not to hear anything in a conference, not to hear few people, having to ask assistance to take a phone call... when the solution might already exists. I feel a bit left with myself at moments, so I asked for an appointment in a readaptation center(in few weeks), to get professionnel advices for my workplace. The company I work for offered to pay for a new phone, but even that was proven to be complicated (I didn't know exactly what to ask, and was getting conflicting information from the internet). The client uses IP phones from Cisco...and Cisco doesn't talk to individual. I am responsible for finding the specifications for the phone I need, and wasn't able to find a clear answer from the web. I have finally been able to convince them to talk to me, even if this wasn't for a large purchase. I am consultant, so I have to get the phones approuved, before asking the firm I work for pay for the phone. The problem is the time elapsed between each step I took... it took 3 months for the client to answer that they would not provide the phone, that the consultation firm would have to pay. I hesitated between asking for a phone or simply an adaptor(Jabra). I saw many negative comments for the adapter, and I don't have that much time to lose (and my company won't pay twice). If other have comments on that or on Naida V and IX... it would be really welcomed.