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Video Documentary: What is it like being deaf

I’m thankful that this gentleman was able to explain his story. Growing up deaf he faced many challenges that people overlook daily. Simply things such as watching tv became a dreadful task for me. He went into depth about the experience of feeling bothersome when he wanted to know something. For example one time everyone in the room laughed about something and when he seek to know they told him to put his hearing aids on rather than explain it to him. That lingered in the back of his head and he began to look at his family extremely differently. I also noticed that as he is telling his story he uses familiar signs that I learned in class like “bored” and the caption interprets it as uninteresting. I also noticed that he uses the sign “die” to say that something is gone or missing within this family. Specific titles like Teacher Aid are also replaced by signs that go together like “Teacher help”.

Basketball was a cool outlet for him and at school he was known as the deaf basketball player who plays really well. Other people spoke on him and eventually the coach searched for him. When he was discovered the coach wanted him on the team, but he had expressed that he would have no ride back and forth to practices/games. Then the coach was able to get him a dorm room and that changed his entire outlook on being deaf. He noticed something flashing in the corner of his room and then he found out that it was a notifying him when someone knocked on the door. He also came across a TV with close captions and began researching new English words. These simply accommodations made him feel connected in ways he didn’t know possible.

It’s sad to know that his family hurt him in many ways and didn’t embrace him for being deaf. He exemplified a memory of walking into the kitchen and remembering his family covering their mouth. He knew that they were discussing something about him, and he could feel the vibe. He emphasized on how that hurt and him. The downfall of being deaf is that you must rely on other people for information at times. While he was at school his TTY was going off from friends and his family never notified him until he asked. One of the key things to always remember is to make room for deaf people to join the conversation.

Growing up he also had to demand respect on the basketball court because people would make fun of him. They looked at him and his death friends as if they were weird. He tells the audience that hearing people can be ignorant unintentionally and that’s why it’s important for deaf people and hearing people to bridge the gap for connection.

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