Total Late Deafness and Voice...

Hedgehog182

New Member
I need feedback! Lots of it, from a wide variety of all of you. Please!:wave:

I grew up hearing, but gradually lost ALL of my hearing. For the past 2 years I've been trying to learn ASL, and to depend on it. I've been Voice Off, to help. And it HAS helped. Now I find I want to stay Voice Off. Is this weird or unusual for a Deafened person who grew up hearing? Do I stand a chance? I am not hearing anymore! There is none! People do not understand that. Some even want to day "Sorry; you grew up hearing, You'll never be Deaf." Sounds like hell to me. I cannot hear! I'll never be ethnically Deaf, I know that, because I did not grow up Deaf. Am I condemned to be neither? I'd so appreciate comments. Thanks!:ty:
 

Mewtilation

New Member
You'll always find people who are one way or the other, no individual is the same, of course. I personally do not care if a person was born Deaf or is late deafened, I have friends from both sides. I also have friends that do not like late deafened people and that's fine, it's their choice. :) You just have to find individuals who like you for you. Identify with whatever you want to identify with. I personally believe a late deafened person can be Deaf. :) Again, some people feel differently and that's their choice, but I don't discriminate. :) Again, you'll get various and VERY different opinions depending on who you talk to and their view on it. :dunno2:
 

Bottesini

Old Deaf Ranter
Premium Member
I need feedback! Lots of it, from a wide variety of all of you. Please!:wave:

. Thanks!:ty:
So you really mean that, I hope?

I think you seem to go right along with a lot of late deafened people who want to be more voice off.

To me it always seems they are doing it because they want special attention when they are perfectly capable of speaking.

I worked hard on speech, and I enjoy using it. If people don't understand me I can write it down.

I can also ask them to write down for me if I can't figure out what they are saying.

Just because I use speech doesn't make me less deaf/Deaf, whatever. (Not late deafened, me.)
 

drphil

Active Member
First off: deafness as such is NOT an "ethnic construction" but an audiological condition, How one "deals with it-up to you"

You are using ASL and became "voice off"

One can surmise in the world you now interact-ASL/Voice off is sufficient Your communication interchange-to date. Also, what/how the local Deaf group reacts to you- might be a guide for your future consideration

Your decision to accept as such
 

rockin'robin

Well-Known Member
:hmm:...Late deafened here...52 years!...And never had the desire to go "voice off"....I can communicate both ways and would not have it any other way. But that's just me....as for you, whatever floats ur boat....
 

ohmylight

New Member
I'm late deafened myself also.... I prefer voice off but I think it distances people who would otherwise get to know me and eventually learn to sign. I loose my voice every spring to seasonal allergies and I can see how much of a strain it takes on others. I sign and speak simultaneously and those who I see often (my best friends and boyfriend namely) usually do ok with me voice off, but they get fatigued.

I like people too much to choose one or the other.
 

TubeTJ

Member
Premium Member
Late deafened, work to speak and keep my words clear. Limited ASL do to other complications.

Everyone above has made good points, but I think Ambrosia said it best.
 

Hedgehog182

New Member
I Did mean it, of course! Thanks for the input! I'm sure some do want more attention. I think my goal is maximal wholeness. As a hearie, I has the voice-ear" pair. Deafs had the Sign-Eye pair. A whole way of living. MY experience, so far, has been a sort of "half-life" or less than whole feeling when I voice. I am open to trying again - even permanently. To garner more feedback, what would your reply be if you knew for certain I was not just a "wanna be" of some sort?
 

Bottesini

Old Deaf Ranter
Premium Member
I Did mean it, of course! Thanks for the input! I'm sure some do want more attention. I think my goal is maximal wholeness. As a hearie, I has the voice-ear" pair. Deafs had the Sign-Eye pair. A whole way of living. MY experience, so far, has been a sort of "half-life" or less than whole feeling when I voice. I am open to trying again - even permanently. To garner more feedback, what would your reply be if you knew for certain I was not just a "wanna be" of some sort?

That it will be impractical unless you dedicate yourself to living in a place with a large deaf population.

Also if you have a hearing family, which as late deafened I assume you do, it is going to be more difficult as sign isn't natural to them and they would have to dedicate to a whole new skill and lifestyle.
 

ohmylight

New Member
That it will be impractical unless you dedicate yourself to living in a place with a large deaf population.

Also if you have a hearing family, which as late deafened I assume you do, it is going to be more difficult as sign isn't natural to them and they would have to dedicate to a whole new skill and lifestyle.

That's EXACTLY my opinion with voice off as late deafened.... you establish years of relationships and it's hard to put a strain on them.
 

VacationGuy234

Active Member
MY experience, so far, has been a sort of "half-life" or less than whole feeling when I voice.

Are you sure you are not confusing your voice issues with the half-life feeling of losing your hearing and the connections had with others? If you believe voice off is going to allow you to fit into a social construct and give you a, "whole-life" you might be disappointed, life itself is not a neat little construct.

Being deaf means you don't have the same life as someone who is hearing. It does not mean you have no life at all, just a different life.

In the end, you are just going to have to do what works best for you. And, you will probably find that it is a combination of many things that will work best.
 
I think you seem to go right along with a lot of late deafened people who want to be more voice off.

To me it always seems they are doing it because they want special attention when they are perfectly capable of speaking.

For me, it's nothing to do with wanting special attention. Talking is damn hard, frustrating, and exhausting. I physically feel better if I don't have to talk a lot. That is why I am voice off as much as possible. I also have a damn good speaking voice, but I don't give a **** that it's so good. I'm only obligated to do what is best for me.
 

Bottesini

Old Deaf Ranter
Premium Member
For me, it's nothing to do with wanting special attention. Talking is damn hard, frustrating, and exhausting. I physically feel better if I don't have to talk a lot. That is why I am voice off as much as possible. I also have a damn good speaking voice, but I don't give a **** that it's so good. I'm only obligated to do what is best for me.

Late deafened people are so hostile...
 

ohmylight

New Member
Late deafened people are so hostile...

Meh - INDIVIDUALS can be hostile.... Born deaf, late deafened, or hearing.... I sincerely don't think you can stereotype all of us late deafened people as hostile.

We all have our own baggage and it's a different sort of situation when your family starts to point out all the flaws in your once perfect speech. I can definitely relate to the OP and others because for years my mom has focused on not what I'm orally telling her but the fact that my speech has lost its clarity. Where before I trusted that people were listening to ME now I can be paranoid that they listen to my SPEECH, neglecting to understand what I'm telling them. She can understand me fine she says, but it's not PERFECT (nor should it be at this point). Day to day I don't feel disabled or bad about my deafness, but this comparison to my old voice feels critical. That degradation of a once perfect accent and the crap you deal with from those who knew you before is something which I have a hard time relating to people who were born deaf about.

You can't compare never having perfect speech to having lost your perfect speech.

My opinion still hasn't changed that I voice and sign simultaneously. I'm stubborn by nature, and it is what it is... I like my friends too much to frustrate them for my sake... But I think the reason is valid when you're late deafened.

I like you well enough, Botts, but I had to respectfully disagree :)
 

Bottesini

Old Deaf Ranter
Premium Member
Meh - INDIVIDUALS can be hostile.... Born deaf, late deafened, or hearing.... I sincerely don't think you can stereotype all of us late deafened people as hostile.

We all have our own baggage and it's a different sort of situation when your family starts to point out all the flaws in your once perfect speech. I can definitely relate to the OP and others because for years my mom has focused on not what I'm orally telling her but the fact that my speech has lost its clarity. Where before I trusted that people were listening to ME now I can be paranoid that they listen to my SPEECH, neglecting to understand what I'm telling them. She can understand me fine she says, but it's not PERFECT (nor should it be at this point). Day to day I don't feel disabled or bad about my deafness, but this comparison to my old voice feels critical. That degradation of a once perfect accent and the crap you deal with from those who knew you before is something which I have a hard time relating to people who were born deaf about.

You can't compare never having perfect speech to having lost your perfect speech.

I like you well enough, Botts, but I had to respectfully disagree :)

:lol: No that's ok. I was just amused at the person who felt so defensive over my expression of my viewpoint when the OP said he really did want it.

I actually understand that many late deafened people go through emotional problems with the change in their life.
 

hoichi

Well-Known Member
I spent the good part of my life voice off. then a good part voice "on". Mainly due to circumstances beyond my control i found myself with no deafies around me or even close. So i decide to go voice on for the sake of hearing people around me not mine.
Its a tool in a tool box i guess. I do want to stress for those first learning asl voice off is a must in my opinion. as for late deafened being hostile well sure why not? People are people. We are emotional beings, not everyone deals with being hearing one day and then deaf another the same way. It also depends on the support or lack of it around the individual.
my opinion of course for what its worth
hoichi-the earless
 
I'm hardly hostile. I've been losing my hearing since birth. I only call myself late deafened because I lost the bulk of it post-lingually, yet I was still a child. I've been deaf for more than half my life now.
 

Bottesini

Old Deaf Ranter
Premium Member
I'm hardly hostile. I've been losing my hearing since birth. I only call myself late deafened because I lost the bulk of it post-lingually, yet I was still a child. I've been deaf for more than half my life now.

Then it's kind of stupid to get all upset in a late deafened thread.
 
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