About once a year, Kelly and I venture out into the morning cold, line our coats with non-crunchy snacks, and drive to the movie theater. For the last few years, we’ve made a special point to see The Hunger Games films around opening weekend. We hate waiting to see the movies we love, but with misophonia playing a huge role in our lives, seeing movies in the theater is definitely a challenge.
When we were first dating, we would wait until movies had been on the market long enough to make it to the dollar theater. Not only would that help us save some money, but it meant we could at least predict there would be a smaller crowd. We would arrive super early and climb up to the back row. Then, we’d each sit on one side of the theater while the rest of the crowed filed in. We’d watch who was going to sit where and what kind of food they were brining in. By the time the previews started, we’d pick the side of the theater that had the fewest food eaters near us.
We’ve gotten smarter since then. Now, if we want to see a moving on opening weekend, we just show up at the first showing on Sunday morning. The ticket sellers may think we’re crazy for showing up so early, sometimes in the snow (The Hunger Games has traditionally come out the week of Thanksgiving), but we love it. If anyone does show up that early, they rarely eat popcorn or bring loud candy bags. You’re more likely to see coffee drinkers at that time. We also aren’t forced to sit on opposite ends of the theater, waiting for people to file in, before we make our final seating choice. Most people don’t want to sit in the back row, so we’re usually pretty safe.
The final measure we’ve put into place is borrowing the hearing assistance devices from the movie theater’s service desk. They provide these devices for people how are hearing impaired because the device acts like a speaker or hearing aid that channels the movie’s sound directly through a set of headphones. Because these headphones are usually cheap (and uncomfortable), we bring our Bose noise-cancelling headphones and plug those in instead. Unless the device is on the fritz, Kelly is usually able to watch the movie in peace, knowing the distractions will be kept to a minimum.
Misophonics often talk about movie theaters as an awful place to go if you have misophonia. While going in the morning doesn’t guarantee you won’t encounter people who might become triggers, it definitely lowers the chance. We’ll be on our way to see the final Hunger Games film during the busy Thanksgiving week, and we’re really looking forward to it.