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#66 - 11/17/07 10:16 AM HoH
twincozmom Offline
New Member
Registered: 11/16/07
Posts: 2
I see that several places it is said that HoH can choose their identity. Can they really? I am HoH and I feel stuck in the middle of two worlds that I can't truly belong to. I have been HoH all my life. I love the Deaf World and I have prayed so many times that God would just let me be deaf. The hearing world gets upset because I can't always hear them even with hearing aids and the Deaf World doesn't always accept me because I am "hearing". If I could choose I would choose the Deaf World in a heart beat. They typicaly are more accepting of others. I am loosing more hearing and the dr. told me I would. I have taught my sons to sign so that when I do loose it all and also for them to be aware of language. They sign some but get embaressed (that is the hearing world for ya). So again I ask can the HoH truly pick or can we only pick what others give us choices of?
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#68 - 11/17/07 09:55 PM Re: HoH [Re: twincozmom]
CSN Offline
Active Member
Registered: 10/09/07
Posts: 162
Loc: Omaha, NE
Hi twincozmom,


Welcome to Deaf Notes! smile I've read your introduction and have some comments about that too.

But first, your entry above. For one thing, no one can tell you what your identity is or should be. That is up to you. Feeling stuck in the middle is a common thing. Especially when one is able to identify with multiple groups. Two things - 1. everyone has a multifaceted identity. And 2. the Deaf community and the Hearing community overlap. True, a person may identify more with one than the other. It's a choice that is theirs alone.

If the Hearing world gets upset with you choose to have a majority of your personal identity with, then it's their problem not yours. I go through a lot of junk from people who do not understand my choice of what to emphasize in my identity. I'm not gonna try to solve their problems. *grin*

I agree with you about the Deaf world. At my local Deaf club, the people there never have judged me about this or that.

That's a good thing to teach your sons to sign. *smile* That's something that will be useful to them in many circumstances. If they get embarassed, they may eventually overcome that. Besides, if they looked at signing as a cool way to communicate then they may change their attitudes. Also, from what I read I wonder how you know they're embarassed. They may not be.

About your introduction, I see that you want to be deaf so that you could feel that you belong. Actually, I believe you do belong. Besides, there are some who are deaf who do not sign nor do not identify with the Deaf community. The "identity" thing is more of a "choice".

You're not alone in not hearing friends at a bar and faking a smile. I've gone through that kind of thing myself. Sometimes it's in a family situation or a social situation. It's sometimes hard to deal with especially when someone KNOWS that I'm deaf.

That's a common thing from your Deaf friend to be upset at not hearing what someone was saying. I have a Deaf friend who told me about feeling invisible in some social situation. I feel that too. It's almost like I'm being isolated. Which is, of course, my perception. Which may or may not be true. But I do feel isolated with many social situations.

If someone tells you something in private then you're correct - it's none of their business what the specific message is. However, if it's made in a social situation then of course others may be curious. But I think you did the right thing in keeping it private.

I see that most Deaf accept you but some do not. That's a common thing with any group of human beings. The larger the group, the more diversified the members and their reactions.

Anyhow, I hope you enjoy your time here. smile
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#70 - 11/18/07 08:18 PM Re: HoH [Re: twincozmom]
terrygirl Offline
New Member
Registered: 11/10/07
Posts: 14
Loc: So. Indiana
I can relate to what your saying about hoh vs deaf, I too am caught in the middle and it's very frustrating for me. I had a deaf boyfriend that cheated and said that was deaf culture was all about (sex with all other deafs) I can't handle that part. I sign good and am late deaf. I feel lost in the middle of two worlds and not belong to either one. I didn't know anyone else felt this same way. Thank you for your post.
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#71 - 11/19/07 07:31 PM Re: HoH [Re: terrygirl]
CSN Offline
Active Member
Registered: 10/09/07
Posts: 162
Loc: Omaha, NE
terrygirl,

Yes, it is frustrating to have the feeling of being caught between two worlds.

One thing, the Deaf world is NOT 'all about sex'. IMO, that's a low-life excuse. I've met many d/Deaf both here, in Deaf club, and in different places. I cannot think of a specific instance when the people I met were anything less than respectful. Someone using that excuse is a chump.

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#76 - 11/20/07 03:34 PM Re: HoH [Re: CSN]
SweetMind Offline
Active Member
Registered: 09/11/07
Posts: 201
Loc: Mother Nature world
Quote:
I can relate to what your saying about hoh vs deaf, I too am caught in the middle and it's very frustrating for me. I had a deaf boyfriend that cheated and said that was deaf culture was all about (sex with all other deafs) I can't handle that part. I sign good and am late deaf. I feel lost in the middle of two worlds and not belong to either one. I didn't know anyone else felt this same way. Thank you for your post.


Your ex boyfriend is totally wrong; that is NOT what the Deaf community is about. That is very lame. He needs to wake up and blame himself for his own wrongdoing.

You are not alone because I feel the same way between Deaf and Hearing worlds because of audist attitude that comes from deaf oralist, Deaf, Deaf Oralism and hearing people that don't appreciate to have Deaf community. My whole family doesn't sign at all because of stupid rule of Oralism educators who said so. Thats what I am getting a lot of isolation from hearing people, Deaf Oralist people, and families who doesn't sign that I don't agree with their "must hear and speak only" attitude. They want to force me to speak and listen alone while I am a real Deaf person. Sighs!.

Millions of people in this society do not accept you because you are deaf. What's more I find this is a real conflict that they think we are not deaf enough! So what does it mean? Hearing is a must for us to hear. What a joke!

In positive way, hearing people can have both sign or listen their spoken words while we cannot hear everything so therefore ASL is the answer for all of us for a very good reason. It s obvious that ASL works everything for both worlds that they couldnt accept to face the true fact. wink

Deaf will be deaf as always. As far as you mentioned that you are the latened deaf that is making my day. I think you got a real good attitude and share with us the similiar problem that Deaf people have it every day of our lives.

Thats why Latened Deaf CSN and I (Deaf) get along so well and am able to discuss with him about anything relates to deaf issues without having a bittered feelings to each other at all. We are being honest to each other that we feel that we are not ashamed of our deafness from a start. It's not the problem we have but Hearing people have the problem about our being difference from them. wink

Keep your chin up! wink

Sweetmind
_________________________
"Light of Love"in our ASL culture. ASL is a form of speech and gives LOVE for all humanity kids. smile
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#109 - 12/15/07 07:53 PM Re: HoH [Re: SweetMind]
terrygirl Offline
New Member
Registered: 11/10/07
Posts: 14
Loc: So. Indiana
Thank you all for letting me know that deaf culture is not (sex culture) He still tells me i have to learn that is the way it is with deaf. Recently he met a woman who wanted him to come live with her but let him know while he is away making up his mind to go do whatever he wants with anyone. I'm thinking that maybe they are just low minded people who happen to be deaf. I'm glad I am hearing from this side of it. Thank you for telling me the truth. I'm very sensitive and i can not live in that culture if that is the way it is. But now I know. Thanks again for being honest.
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#114 - 12/16/07 03:48 PM Re: HoH [Re: terrygirl]
Babybluezoo8 Offline
New Member
Registered: 12/15/07
Posts: 9
Now Im an HOH person that is married to a hearing guy. (wonderful guy mind you) But as in all relationships...good guys and bad guys. He is just using the deaf culture as an excuse. He as an individual IS the problem. He is blaming others for what he has done and using it as a poor excuse. which shows he is not being a MAN and honest with you. I don't know if you are moving on and to just let him go. But I hope you will just let him go and go out and find a nice guy that will treat you with respect and not use culture or blaming others for his actions. He is just a guy that can not keep his zippers up.
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#262 - 03/07/08 05:02 PM Re: HoH [Re: Babybluezoo8]
capd/Deaf Offline
New Member
Registered: 03/04/08
Posts: 5
Wow Im glad to read these posts. For so long I have felt different from Hearing people, but they want to make me Hearing like them. I am very shy and even suspicious around Hearing I don't know. I will walk right up new Deaf easy introduce myself no problem. Heart open. Hard for me look at Hearing in eyes. Don't-know why exactly. Sigh. I know one thing. I wish Hearing wouldn't treat me like I'm stupid. I'm Deaf and smart, thank you.
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#263 - 03/08/08 03:37 AM Re: HoH [Re: Babybluezoo8]
capd/Deaf Offline
New Member
Registered: 03/04/08
Posts: 5
Hi,

I have been going to a Lutheran church since maybe dec 15th. It is a Hearing church, but it has a few who sign. The people have been very kind to me. But, last time we had service the interpreter garbled the sermon so badly that I was totally lost. I think maybe she is using SEE or Contact Sign. I understand ASL type signing better. Also, this person doesn't seem to want to sign around me outside of services or Sunday School. She almost always uses her voice alone. I get the feeling that she expects me to use my voice, too. I'm not sure I feel comfortable doing this. Any advice?



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#513 - 03/29/09 09:11 PM Re: HoH [Re: twincozmom]
FootballHuddles Offline
New Member
Registered: 10/03/07
Posts: 4
Loc: Ohio
I also am "stuck between two worlds" as someone who is HOH and a part of the hearing community. These are the problems I have by not being deaf:

1. My dad, job training coordinator, and speech therapists and every audiologist I ever met - even a counselor I used to talk to - all insisted I wear hearing aids. I told them the reasons I hate to wear hearing aids: they are uncomfortable to wear; a lot of ear wax got in them; they became useless after an hour; I usually don't go anywhere except work and a swimming pool. I only got a bunch of counter-arguments: I will get used to them if I wear them all day every day; I can clean my ears often; I can have someone else clean the hearing aids. People just will not accept the fact that they do not help me and I rarely need them anyway. mad

2. When I ask people to repeat themselves, they do not attempt to make themselves easier to hear. I told them to talk louder. They did not. I told them to come close to me. They did not. I got the feeling nobody cares because I told them my hearing is not good in either ear. One person thought I was joking when I told him he needs to talk loud for me to hear him and faked it by saying, "I can't hear you, talk louder," when I was talking loud already. It makes me think I am not deaf enough because I have no way to prove to anyone I cannot hear the words. mad

As much as I hate the attitudes hearing people have toward the hearing loss I always had, I fear deaf people would hate to be around me because I do not sign. When hearing loss is moderate ASL is not necessary to communicate with hearing people, so if I tried to join the Deaf community, everybody would reject me. That is why I registered to post on this message board - there is no other way to feel comfortable around deaf people without knowing enough ASL to use it. blush
_________________________
"What will not kill you makes you stronger."

Robert Rose, former football player
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#517 - 03/31/09 09:04 PM Re: HoH [Re: capd/Deaf]
FootballHuddles Offline
New Member
Registered: 10/03/07
Posts: 4
Loc: Ohio
Originally Posted By: capd/Deaf
Wow Im glad to read these posts. For so long I have felt different from Hearing people, but they want to make me Hearing like them. I am very shy and even suspicious around Hearing I don't know. I will walk right up new Deaf easy introduce myself no problem. Heart open. Hard for me look at Hearing in eyes. Don't-know why exactly. Sigh. I know one thing. I wish Hearing wouldn't treat me like I'm stupid. I'm Deaf and smart, thank you.


I totally agree about hearing people thinking deaf people are stupid. Some people I meet are annoyed when I say I can't hear them. One day at work a supervisor said as I was speaking loudly, "Talk louder; I can't hear you," just because I had told him that a few minutes earlier when he talked to me. I could bet my money nobody who is deaf would think that was funny.

My two biggest problems have always been hearing people saying I need hearing aids, which caused more problems than they solved, and hearing people refusing to talk to my face within arm's length of me as loud as I talk (70-80 decibels) when they talk to me. When I ask people to repeat themselves they do not talk louder than they did the first time even if I tell them I have a hearing loss. What is wrong with people who can hear much better than I do? These two problems make me wish I could hear as well as the people around me because they will never die until I do. If people were willing and able to accept the fact that I will never wear hearing aids again after all the negative experiences I had with them, I would not hate being HOH every day.

The fact that nobody talks loud enough for me to hear every word all the time makes me think maybe I am not deaf enough because I would definitely force them to comply if I communicated through sign language instead of speech. With a moderate loss (40 to 70 decibels), I just need people to talk louder, not learn ASL. That is why I am unable to communicate with so many people: without the need to sign and speechread, I have no way to prove I really can't hear everything people are saying. So I think being deaf is not as bad as being hard of hearing because it is obvious when a deaf person can't hear other people, so hearing people would be willing to communicate a different way with a deaf person. Can somebody help me?
_________________________
"What will not kill you makes you stronger."

Robert Rose, former football player
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#544 - 06/13/09 06:54 PM Re: HoH [Re: twincozmom]
KT Offline
New Member
Registered: 06/12/09
Posts: 2
Loc: Illinois
I'M NOT THE ONLY ONE!!!

Wow, this post is sooo for me!

I grew up in a hearing world...I wanted to be a part of the deaf world SOOO BAD. I wasn't really exposed to anyone with any sort of (real) hearing impairment until I was about 9 years old. I started learning sign language and spending a lot of time with her. I too remember wishing I was deaf. I did not get my first hearing aid until I was about 11 or 12 years old. The doctors told my mom a few things....I didn't need signlanguage, a hearing aid for my type of hearing loss was not yet made (which I believe is true, since my loss is kind of odd), and that I would be okay. Of course, I won't go pointing fingers, but sometimes I wish they didn't tell my parents that I didn't need sign. I spent my life around about 5 other individiuals that had some sort of hearing impairment. When I was 10 years old I went to my first deaf camp. There, nobody accepted me...my couselor even thought it was weird that I could speak with no speech problems. I gave it another shoot...and each year got better and better, I went for 5 years and have made some amazing friends! When I was 15 going on 16 I began to lose more hearing. I now can't hear without a hearing aid. There are days where I wish I didn't take what I had for granted, beucase it was great. All those times I wished I was deaf, I thought it would make the world better, but it didn't change much for me. Now I'm afraid to live alone and less indipendent, because what if the house starts on fire and I don't hear the fire alarm? or what if I don't wake up to a strobe? (i've had those big strobes in my room before and did not wake up). I have had some individuals who were deaf in my life that have judged me and told me I didn't belong anywhere. Deaf or not...oral or not....I'm afraid if you were ever hearing impaired or hard of hearing that might be all you'll ever be??
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#562 - 10/24/09 01:22 PM Re: HoH [Re: FootballHuddles]
CSN Offline
Active Member
Registered: 10/09/07
Posts: 162
Loc: Omaha, NE
IMO, they insisted on you wearing hearing aids because that was their orientation: hearing. Should they be deaf. related to or know D/deaf then their orientation would be more humane.

If you are uncomfortable wearing them then that in itself will affect your communication. Especially when you are communicting with a stranger.
Quote:
I usually don't go anywhere excepr work and a swimming pool.


Then, it id your choice where to go, what to do, when to do it, etc... If your decisions are healthy in the long term then the balance of what to do is more in your regard. There are, of course, those things that the decision is more affected by society, but this is nor one of them.

People may not care because of their views about deaf. If they take a sophmoric and/or derogatory view about being deaf then they may expect you to make adjustments. Which you are already doing!! Because the communication is two-sided it is up to the others to make adjustments as well.

If someone chooses not to be around you because you are deaf then that shows their ignorance. The idea of "not being deaf enough" is the same as "not being hearing enough". IOW, both are mere opinion.

I do not think D/deaf people would reject you.
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#589 - 04/07/10 09:42 PM Re: HoH [Re: twincozmom]
marylou4 Offline
New Member
Registered: 04/07/10
Posts: 3
Loc: Dade city Florida
grin You all are the first people(new friends) that I have ever heard that feel the same way I do. I am severely HOH, and I have been telling my hearing friends that I don't fit in in either world. I am constantly asking people to repeat what they said, usually more than once or twice. They get so frustrated with me. If I ask them to speak louder, they speak v e r y s l o w l y. Sometimes they try to talk directly in my ear, but half the time they talk into my left ear, which has 0% hearing. I laugh but because I don't want to cry. The deaf world gets just as frustrated as the hearing due because I don't know very much ASL. They walk away when i approach, so they don't have to try signing with someone who is trying to learn. I am invisible to both worlds. But I read your posts and I also read others respnses. You all are very supportive of each other. You are kind and helpful. I feel so blessed to be a part of such a loving and friendly group. i look forward to getting to know all better.
_________________________
I sure hopes this works.
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#596 - 04/11/10 09:49 PM Re: HoH [Re: marylou4]
shengchieh Offline
New Member
Registered: 07/03/08
Posts: 3
I think it's a matter of how much hearing loss you have. Before
the stroke I could discriminate 90% and "could pick" which world
to be in. And since my ASL is awful, I was mostly in the
hearing world. Now it's 50%, so I'm stuck between 2 worlds -
can't do well in the hearing world nor sign well in the deaf
world.

Sheng-Chieh
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