2 parents with newly diagnosed deaf baby

julesallen

New Member
Hi

Myself and my partner have a beautiful 4 month old baby boy. We were told today that he is deaf. We have to see a specialist but that may take a few weeks. It has been quite a shock and we are full of questions and fears. We are reaching out our hands into your forum hoping to find some understanding.

Thanks

Julian & Kerri
 

julesallen

New Member
Thanks

We as parents are at the beginning of our journey. Our biggest question right now is what are the questions we should be asking of the health care professionals?
 

shel90

Audist are not welcome
Premium Member
I am not sure what kind of questions you will need to ask. All I know is that most medical professionals will probably recommend CIs for your child which should be your decision. If you dont feel comfortable with that and they push you into it by saying the window of opportunity for language development will close, it is not true because many deaf children acquire language through sign language and spoken language without CIs but according to many people who have experienced getting CIs say that developing spoken language is easier.

Since I am not a parent of a deaf child, I cant really tell you what's the best way to go but as a deaf person who grew up without sign language, in my opinion giving your child both spoken and sign language is probably the best avenue to take so your child can have the option of either going oral only, sign-only, or both which in many cases most tend to go with both.

Exposure to other deaf children especially those who sign would be beneficial so your child can know that there are other children like him and feel secure with his deafness instead of trying to be like his hearing peers.

Also, deaf role models are great if you have any deaf organizations in your area. You and your child will be welcome with open arms.

Just a heads up...if you decide to go the CI route, you may get criticism from those in the Deaf community. Ignore them..they do not represent the whole community.

If you decide not to go the CI route, you may get criticism from those in the medical field as my friend who has two deaf sons went through.

There are many of us who are deaf here...culturally Deaf, deaf, deaf with CIs, deaf who wear HAs and deaf who dont wear any listening devices, and late deafened people and most of us have lived fulfilling and happy lives.

Good luck!
 

Bebonang

Active Member
:welcome: to AllDeaf forum. The only thing I really hate about CI for very young children like babies is that the babies are way too young to have CI. The medical professionals and other audists think that babies will learn how to hear the words (listening) at a very young age and also on the road to oral langauge. I would prefer very young children to wait until they are old enough to understand if they want to have CI or not. Never force on the child to get the CI. CI is not a miracle like hearing aid or any other devices. Some of the Deaf members dream about having a stem cells and that would not work anyway.

As of now, I hope you can find lots of information here about deafness, Deaf Culture and ASL (or other sign langauge in other countries). See you around here. :wave:
 
R

rockdrummer

Guest
I am not sure what kind of questions you will need to ask. All I know is that most medical professionals will probably recommend CIs for your child which should be your decision. If you dont feel comfortable with that and they push you into it by saying the window of opportunity for language development will close, it is not true because many deaf children acquire language through sign language and spoken language without CIs but according to many people who have experienced getting CIs say that developing spoken language is easier.

Since I am not a parent of a deaf child, I cant really tell you what's the best way to go but as a deaf person who grew up without sign language, in my opinion giving your child both spoken and sign language is probably the best avenue to take so your child can have the option of either going oral only, sign-only, or both which in many cases most tend to go with both.

Exposure to other deaf children especially those who sign would be beneficial so your child can know that there are other children like him and feel secure with his deafness instead of trying to be like his hearing peers.

Also, deaf role models are great if you have any deaf organizations in your area. You and your child will be welcome with open arms.

Just a heads up...if you decide to go the CI route, you may get criticism from those in the Deaf community. Ignore them..they do not represent the whole community.

If you decide not to go the CI route, you may get criticism from those in the medical field as my friend who has two deaf sons went through.

There are many of us who are deaf here...culturally Deaf, deaf, deaf with CIs, deaf who wear HAs and deaf who dont wear any listening devices, and late deafened people and most of us have lived fulfilling and happy lives.

Good luck!
:gpost: the only thing that I would add is; no matter which route you decide to take, you should start signing now.
 

Frisky Feline

Well-Known Member
I am not sure what kind of questions you will need to ask. All I know is that most medical professionals will probably recommend CIs for your child which should be your decision. If you dont feel comfortable with that and they push you into it by saying the window of opportunity for language development will close, it is not true because many deaf children acquire language through sign language and spoken language without CIs but according to many people who have experienced getting CIs say that developing spoken language is easier.

Since I am not a parent of a deaf child, I cant really tell you what's the best way to go but as a deaf person who grew up without sign language, in my opinion giving your child both spoken and sign language is probably the best avenue to take so your child can have the option of either going oral only, sign-only, or both which in many cases most tend to go with both.

Exposure to other deaf children especially those who sign would be beneficial so your child can know that there are other children like him and feel secure with his deafness instead of trying to be like his hearing peers.

Also, deaf role models are great if you have any deaf organizations in your area. You and your child will be welcome with open arms.

Just a heads up...if you decide to go the CI route, you may get criticism from those in the Deaf community. Ignore them..they do not represent the whole community.

If you decide not to go the CI route, you may get criticism from those in the medical field as my friend who has two deaf sons went through.

There are many of us who are deaf here...culturally Deaf, deaf, deaf with CIs, deaf who wear HAs and deaf who dont wear any listening devices, and late deafened people and most of us have lived fulfilling and happy lives.

Good luck!
:gpost: the only thing that I would add is; no matter which route you decide to take, you should start signing now.
Well said.
 

WeeBeastie

New Member
Welcome!

My first bit of advice - Early Intervention services. If you're in the States, these are available through your county's Human Services department. Don't wait for a doctor to tell you about it... call tomorrow.

Sign. Even just a little bit to begin with. Milk is a great first sign for a wee one. Don't expect results right away, but don't be surprised if you see 1-2 signs in the next few weeks if you are persistent.

Find support. Some areas have playgroups/support groups for families of newly identified children. If you are religious, find a local church with signed/interpreted services. They're a great place to make contacts.

Do not let yourself be pushed to make any decision for your child. Everyone has their own opinion, but he's your son. Your opinion trumps all.

If you have a hard time finding info, try contacting your state's Hands & Voices chapter. They should be able to point you in the right direction. Also, a TON of excellent info on their site.

Hang on tight! It's gonna be a bumpy ride!
 

Malfoyish

New Member
Hello Julian and Kerri! Welcome to All Deaf!

I think the first thing to do here is to gain a better understanding of your son's capabilities. Have his hearing tested on a regular basis...your son's audiologist may be able to best advise you as to what route to take as far as language is concerned. My personal recommendation is for you both to learn to sign and to instill signing skills into your son immediately. This will enable all of you to become more active in the deaf community (and even if you guys don't particularly interact with a lot of deaf people, your son very well may as he grows up!) and will also make life easier for you as a family unit.

This is not to say your son will not speak - I broke just about every rule as far as that goes. I was diagnosed as deaf at four months old myself, and my mother's only "mistake" was insisting that I learn to speak and sign language was not an option. As a result, I became someone who didn't quite fit into the deaf community OR the hearing world. I was stuck in the middle for a very long time and still am. I could not carry on a conversation with someone who was fluent in ASL...and even though my lip-reading skills are extremely advanced, I still miss a LOT.

I'm 31 years old now and cochlear implants were not available when I was a baby, but I did get implanted at the age of 24. I believe them to be a decision that your son is entitled to make when he is old enough to make such a choice - it is a highly intrusive procedure and there is a LOT of training required in order to reap every benefit from the cochlear implant. You are the parents and the choice is yours to make as long as your boy is a minor, but please think it through - there's no rush. :) There's plenty of time for that, and I'm sure technologies will be further advanced in the next decade or two!

You guys are more than welcome to PM me if you need or would like to talk. :)

By the way, don't listen to the others about my reputation. I'm not as much of a biter as they all say I am. ;)

Malfoyish
 

overthepond

New Member
I am not sure what kind of questions you will need to ask. All I know is that most medical professionals will probably recommend CIs for your child which should be your decision. If you dont feel comfortable with that and they push you into it by saying the window of opportunity for language development will close, it is not true because many deaf children acquire language through sign language and spoken language without CIs but according to many people who have experienced getting CIs say that developing spoken language is easier.

Since I am not a parent of a deaf child, I cant really tell you what's the best way to go but as a deaf person who grew up without sign language, in my opinion giving your child both spoken and sign language is probably the best avenue to take so your child can have the option of either going oral only, sign-only, or both which in many cases most tend to go with both.

Exposure to other deaf children especially those who sign would be beneficial so your child can know that there are other children like him and feel secure with his deafness instead of trying to be like his hearing peers.

Also, deaf role models are great if you have any deaf organizations in your area. You and your child will be welcome with open arms.

Just a heads up...if you decide to go the CI route, you may get criticism from those in the Deaf community. Ignore them..they do not represent the whole community.

If you decide not to go the CI route, you may get criticism from those in the medical field as my friend who has two deaf sons went through.

There are many of us who are deaf here...culturally Deaf, deaf, deaf with CIs, deaf who wear HAs and deaf who dont wear any listening devices, and late deafened people and most of us have lived fulfilling and happy lives.

Good luck!
Brilliant post... Sign is the best way to start anyway for any babies, it reduces funstrations when the baby is trying to commuicate. My cousin's little boy is of same age as yours knows milk and more, he's hearing and very happy little chap.
Don't let anyone pressurise you to take drastic action, give it good thought, take advice, seek second advice if not sure.

Other thing, love you child like any kid, don't wrap him in a cotton wool or let him get away with things. He's just deaf normal kid not fragile.

I am profoundly deaf (since birth), I had HA's all my childhood and early adulthood and now have Cochlear implant. My parents treated me like normal child but with sign lang at first until I discovered my voice at 5. I am now Teaching Assistant trainee at oral deaf school, My speech is very good for a profoundly deaf and it was developed quite late. My colleagues at my old retail job forgets that i am deaf, they give me the phone and i look at them and said you'll need to relay for me, we do see the funny side of it but deep inside i wished they remembered. I still sign these days with friends. I am glad i had an access to both language.
 

~SG~

Well-Known Member
Premium Member
Welcome to AllDeaf! :)

Malfoyish, new members would need to make 50 posts then the PM features will be enabled. :)
 

Berry

New Member
Welcome!



Sign. Even just a little bit to begin with. Milk is a great first sign for a wee one. Don't expect results right away, but don't be surprised if you see 1-2 signs in the next few weeks if you are persistent.


Hang on tight! It's gonna be a bumpy ride!
Note:

Please don't try to learn signs from a book alone. Videos are better. Someone who signs is best. Even someone familiar with signing can have a difficult time trying to figure out how to form a new sign from a book alone.

Remember your baby won't make "perfect" signs for a while. The sign for milk might at first look as though the baby is scratching his ear, reaching for a star, or bopping himself on the head. Still you can tell the difference between a random gesture and a deliberate attempt to mimic your sign.

Don't try to correct the babies signing: Do be happy and encourage each improvement.

And don't be afraid. Think of it as an adventure into a wonderful new world.
 

overthepond

New Member
There's lady on website/youtube who teaches her daughter (her name is firesse or something) and she's hearing... I think it's called... Signhands??
 

xsuperchick

New Member
Welcome, Julian & Kerri! :wave:
Congrats for your new baby, I bet you will find a lot of info here. Got to tell you, this people is awesome!
 

FxAvatar

New Member
Note:

Please don't try to learn signs from a book alone. Videos are better. Someone who signs is best. Even someone familiar with signing can have a difficult time trying to figure out how to form a new sign from a book alone.

Remember your baby won't make "perfect" signs for a while. The sign for milk might at first look as though the baby is scratching his ear, reaching for a star, or bopping himself on the head. Still you can tell the difference between a random gesture and a deliberate attempt to mimic your sign.

Don't try to correct the babies signing: Do be happy and encourage each improvement.

And don't be afraid. Think of it as an adventure into a wonderful new world.

:gpost:
I found the "Signing Time" video series to be a good start. I hit the video section of the kids’ area at my local library and checked out the videos. They did not have them all, but had a good amount of them to try out. The baby signs version could be a good start too.
 
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