Episode notes

Memoirist John Cotter describes his partial loss of hearing through a series of anecdotes. Running along the Massachusetts coastline, he found he could no longer hear the rush and ebb of the ocean waves. He danced at a wedding to what he thought was an indiscriminate wall of cacophony but when his wife said it was “Billie Jean”, John’s brain was able to assemble the sound together through memory. John was diagnosed with Ménière’s disease, which affects hearing and causes vertigo, but received little in the way of treatment advice beyond being told to get on antidepressants. This wasn’t necessarily bad advice because he entered a deep depression from losing the ability to teach, to enjoy his favorite music, and even to talk to friends on the phone. Gradually, he finds hearing aids that are effective, learns to read lips (which he does in this interview conducted over Zoom), and finds music again.

Get your copy of Losing Music: A Memoir wherever books are sold. Learn more about John Cotter by visiting his website, www.JohnCotter.net.

Thank you to all our listeners who support the show as monthly members of Maximum Fun.

Check out our I’m Glad You’re Here and Depresh Mode merchandise at the brand new merch website MaxFunStore.com!

Hey, remember, you’re part of Depresh Mode and we want to hear what you want to hear about. What guests and issues would you like to have covered in a future episode? Write us at depreshmode@maximumfun.org.

Help is available right away.

The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 988 or 1-800-273-8255, 1-800-273-TALK

Crisis Text Line: Text HOME to 741741.

International suicide hotline numbers available here: https://www.opencounseling.com/suicide-hotlines

The Depresh Mode newsletter is available twice a week. Subscribe for free and stay up to date on the show and mental health issues. https://johnmoe.substack.com/

John’s acclaimed memoir, The Hilarious World of Depression, is now available in paperback. https://us.macmillan.com/books/9781250209566/thehilariousworldofdepression

Find the show on Twitter @depreshpod and Instagram @depreshpod.

John is on Twitter @johnmoe.

In this episode...


  • John Cotter

About the show

Join host John Moe (The Hilarious World of Depression) for honest, relatable, and, yes, sometimes funny conversations about mental health. Hear from comedians, musicians, authors, actors, and other top names in entertainment and the arts about living with depression, anxiety, and many other common disorders. Find out what they’ve done to address it, what worked, and what didn’t. Depresh Mode with John Moe also features useful insights on mental health issues with experts in the field. It’s honest talk from people who have been there and know their stuff. No shame, no stigma, and maybe a few laughs.

Like this podcast? Then you’ll love John’s book, The Hilarious World of Depression.

Logo by Clarissa Hernandez.

Get in touch with the show


How to listen

Stream or download episodes directly from our website, or listen via your favorite podcatcher!

Share this show

New? Start here...