You have to be Deaf to Understand....

Chrysanthe

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This thread may be posted but I am gonna post it.... This is for hearing people who think that deaf community isn't crucial.... (sorry if I am being bold but I feel freely to share my feeling about my deafness.... this is how I feel about being Deaf)

I feel the deaf community is highly crucial because of language, culture, customs and beliefs. If it weren't for the deaf community, we would be ISOLATED. NO ONE would understand what we are going thru. It is not about hearing aid...it is not about cochlear implants. I am not talking about Hearing people who thinks the best for deaf people. I am talking about what we know the best for ourselves. When I first participated in the deaf community, I was able to understand who I was. I was feeling alive when I was around deaf people because they UNDERSTAND ME!!! It was so neat to know that I wasn't ALONE. My parents are hearing, They don't understand why I was not particpating with family activities very much when I was in college. I was hungry for learning about the Deaf community. Then later, I sat down and thought about how I feel about my hearing family, my parents and I had a great talk. They know that I am not in their world and they are not in my world. But it doesnt mean we are going to be apart. As long as we understand each other we are not in the same world. Because our cultures are different... and as long as we respect each other, we have gotten better with our family relationships.

I finally played volleyball with my deaf friends... I played basketball with my deaf friends... it was so much fun because we can communicate. No one left me out. It is just that I am tired of people are saying, if we are involve in a hearing world, it ll help us to be a better person, how is that we can be a better person? If someone could explain me this... how can we be a better person if we involve with hearing community not be part of deaf community? Share your input! ;)

You Have to be deaf to understand the deaf

What is it like to "hear" a hand?
You have to be deaf to understand.

What is it like to be a small child,
In a school, in a room void of sound --
With a teacher who talks and talks and talks;
And then when she does come around to you,
She expects you to know what she's said?
You have to be deaf to understand.

Or the teacher thinks that to make you smart,
You must first learn how to talk with your voice;
So mumbo-jumbo with hands on your face
For hours and hours without patience or end,
Until out comes a faint resembling sound?
You have to be deaf to understand.

What is it like to be curious,
To thirst for knowledge you can call your own,
With an inner desire that's set on fire --
And you ask a brother, sister, or friend
Who looks in answer and says, "Never Mind"?
You have to be deaf to understand.

What it is like in a corner to stand,
Though there's nothing you've done really wrong,
Other than try to make use of your hands
To a silent peer to communicate
A thought that comes to your mind all at once?
You have to be deaf to understand.

What is it like to be shouted at
When one thinks that will help you to hear;
Or misunderstand the words of a friend
Who is trying to make a joke clear,
And you don't get the point because he's failed?
You have to be deaf to understand.

What is it like to be laughed in the face
When you try to repeat what is said;
Just to make sure that you've understood,
And you find that the words were misread --
And you want to cry out, "Please help me, friend"?
You have to be deaf to understand.

What is it like to have to depend
Upon one who can hear to phone a friend;
Or place a call to a business firm
And be forced to share what's personal, and,
Then find that your message wasn't made clear?
You have to be deaf to understand.

What is it like to be deaf and alone
In the company of those who can hear --
And you only guess as you go along,
For no one's there with a helping hand,
As you try to keep up with words and song?
You have to be deaf to understand.

What is it like on the road of life
To meet with a stranger who opens his mouth --
And speaks out a line at a rapid pace;
And you can't understand the look in his face
Because it is new and you're lost in the race?
You have to be deaf to understand.

What is it like to comprehend
Some nimble fingers that paint the scene,
And make you smile and feel serene,
With the "spoken word" of the moving hand
That makes you part of the word at large?
You have to be deaf to understand.

What is it like to "hear" a hand?
Yes, you have to be deaf to understand.
 

madkitten

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Good reading good poem too.
I am new to this site and for the first time I can talk to people who understand .:deaf: .
 

hailstorm100

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Great poem!! I wish I could have shared that poem with people, when I was growing up.
 

cleve

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I am one who can hear but I got the most from Chrysantha commentary she gave me such a needed insight into the deaf ''world''
Yes that simple word said so much ''world''' about her own parents but in a different world. I have always had a love for the deaf but after reading this it made me think about something that the deaf dont get from the hearing people, and the only way I can say it is like this.. some one from the hearing world to come up and embrace them and hug them and not let go to not hug and then run away thinking ; ''there I did my part for the deaf'' to connect beyond the prefunctionary requirment you must be in or next to there world cosistantly. I dont know if Im being clear but this is what I felt was needed from her words. the uniting of both of our senses that of touch . now days everybody hugs each other till it means nothing but like a hardy hand shake between two men says something about there character. the embrace or hug between two humans and in this case between one deaf and one hearing it should be firm and sustaing and then slowly let go but then stay a bit connecting with the eyes ! Thats how I feel about the deaf I really love you so much. I want you to know there are a few people in our world that are wanting to connect to your world and who wont cut it short they will stay at yourside deeply interested in your world. and value you. thank you for allowing me to try and express what I feel and I apologise if my words came out wrong or reflected my great ignorance. my name is Cleve Hubbs I live in california I am 73 and want you to know I realy care
 

SusanAbare1972

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This thread may be posted, but I am going to post it.... This is for hearing people who think that deaf community isn't crucial.... (sorry if I am being bold but I feel freely to share my feeling about my deafness.... this is how I feel about being Deaf)

I feel the deaf community is highly crucial because of language, culture, customs and beliefs. If it weren't for the deaf community, we would be ISOLATED. NO ONE would understand what we are going thru. It is not about hearing aid...it is not about cochlear implants. I am not talking about Hearing people who thinks the best for deaf people. I am talking about what we know the best for ourselves. When I first participated in the deaf community, I was able to understand who I was. I was feeling alive when I was around deaf people because they UNDERSTAND ME!!! It was so neat to know that I wasn't ALONE. My parents are hearing, They don't understand why I was not particpating with family activities very much when I was in college. I was hungry for learning about the Deaf community. Then later, I sat down and thought about how I feel about my hearing family, my parents and I had a great talk. They know that I am not in their world and they are not in my world. But it doesnt mean we are going to be apart. As long as we understand each other we are not in the same world. Because our cultures are different... and as long as we respect each other, we have gotten better with our family relationships.

I finally played volleyball with my deaf friends... I played basketball with my deaf friends... it was so much fun because we can communicate. No one left me out. It is just that I am tired of people are saying, if we are involve in a hearing world, it ll help us to be a better person, how is that we can be a better person? If someone could explain me this... how can we be a better person if we involve with hearing community not be part of deaf community? Share your input! ;)

You Have to be deaf to understand the deaf

What is it like to "hear" a hand?
You have to be deaf to understand.

What is it like to be a small child,
In a school, in a room void of sound --
With a teacher who talks and talks and talks;
And then when she does come around to you,
She expects you to know what she's said?
You have to be deaf to understand.

Or the teacher thinks that to make you smart,
You must first learn how to talk with your voice;
So mumbo-jumbo with hands on your face
For hours and hours without patience or end,
Until out comes a faint resembling sound?
You have to be deaf to understand.

What is it like to be curious,
To thirst for knowledge you can call your own,
With an inner desire that's set on fire --
And you ask a brother, sister, or friend
Who looks in answer and says, "Never Mind"?
You have to be deaf to understand.

What it is like in a corner to stand,
Though there's nothing you've done really wrong,
Other than try to make use of your hands
To a silent peer to communicate
A thought that comes to your mind all at once?
You have to be deaf to understand.

What is it like to be shouted at
When one thinks that will help you to hear;
Or misunderstand the words of a friend
Who is trying to make a joke clear,
And you don't get the point because he's failed?
You have to be deaf to understand.

What is it like to be laughed in the face
When you try to repeat what is said;
Just to make sure that you've understood,
And you find that the words were misread --
And you want to cry out, "Please help me, friend"?
You have to be deaf to understand.

What is it like to have to depend
Upon one who can hear to phone a friend;
Or place a call to a business firm
And be forced to share what's personal, and,
Then find that your message wasn't made clear?
You have to be deaf to understand.

What is it like to be deaf and alone
In the company of those who can hear --
And you only guess as you go along,
For no one's there with a helping hand,
As you try to keep up with words and song?
You have to be deaf to understand.

What is it like on the road of life
To meet with a stranger who opens his mouth --
And speaks out a line at a rapid pace;
And you can't understand the look in his face
Because it is new and you're lost in the race?
You have to be deaf to understand.

What is it like to comprehend
Some nimble fingers that paint the scene,
And make you smile and feel serene,
With the "spoken word" of the moving hand
That makes you part of the word at large?
You have to be deaf to understand.

What is it like to "hear" a hand?
Yes, you have to be deaf to understand.
I'm hearing. I have always had a desire to learn about Deaf culture and ASL! I didn't get support from family when I first started learning ASL in the mid-to-late 1980s. It wasn't until I found the courage to go to college that I got involved with the Deaf community and learned ASL. I felt guilty for wanting to be a part of the Deaf community because of my past experience. It was horrible! All the stigma around the hearing world and the Deaf world when I first wanted to learn ASL was running in my head. Would I, as a hearing person, be welcomed? Will I be able to learn ASL without criticism? I turned to books for help with learning ASL as I couldn't get into an ASL class at the time. I took to it like a moth to a flame. I would do all I could to learn the language, how to do it p, and without errors (I'm a perfectionist). I would read and reread my instruction books repeatedly and question people constantly. I even became a member of the college's ASL club to learn even more! It wasn't until we went on our trip to the American School for the Deaf in Connecticut that I got my first taste of Deaf culture as we toured the facility. I wanted more but had no outlet to do so and was too afraid to ask for fear of rejection. (my personality shining through!) It wasn't until I took my first ASL class that we delved into Deaf culture a little bit. I was able to ask all those questions that I was too fearful to ask beforehand and absorbed it like a dry sponge. I would read and reread the little culture notations in my ASL book over and over and still do from time to time. When I switched schools in September 2021, I took my second ASL course and am currently taking a Deaf studies course. I can't wait to take ASL 3 which will be available starting in the Summer. I've fallen in LOVE! While ASL 3 will be the end of my formal study in Deaf culture and ASL, I don't plan on stopping there! I will continue my study of Deaf culture with copies of Deaf culture literature from DawnSign.
 

VuSpeech

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This thread may be posted but I am gonna post it.... This is for hearing people who think that deaf community isn't crucial.... (sorry if I am being bold but I feel freely to share my feeling about my deafness.... this is how I feel about being Deaf)

I feel the deaf community is highly crucial because of language, culture, customs and beliefs. If it weren't for the deaf community, we would be ISOLATED. NO ONE would understand what we are going thru. It is not about hearing aid...it is not about cochlear implants. I am not talking about Hearing people who thinks the best for deaf people. I am talking about what we know the best for ourselves. When I first participated in the deaf community, I was able to understand who I was. I was feeling alive when I was around deaf people because they UNDERSTAND ME!!! It was so neat to know that I wasn't ALONE. My parents are hearing, They don't understand why I was not particpating with family activities very much when I was in college. I was hungry for learning about the Deaf community. Then later, I sat down and thought about how I feel about my hearing family, my parents and I had a great talk. They know that I am not in their world and they are not in my world. But it doesnt mean we are going to be apart. As long as we understand each other we are not in the same world. Because our cultures are different... and as long as we respect each other, we have gotten better with our family relationships.

I finally played volleyball with my deaf friends... I played basketball with my deaf friends... it was so much fun because we can communicate. No one left me out. It is just that I am tired of people are saying, if we are involve in a hearing world, it ll help us to be a better person, how is that we can be a better person? If someone could explain me this... how can we be a better person if we involve with hearing community not be part of deaf community? Share your input! ;)

You Have to be deaf to understand the deaf

What is it like to "hear" a hand?
You have to be deaf to understand.

What is it like to be a small child,
In a school, in a room void of sound --
With a teacher who talks and talks and talks;
And then when she does come around to you,
She expects you to know what she's said?
You have to be deaf to understand.

Or the teacher thinks that to make you smart,
You must first learn how to talk with your voice;
So mumbo-jumbo with hands on your face
For hours and hours without patience or end,
Until out comes a faint resembling sound?
You have to be deaf to understand.

What is it like to be curious,
To thirst for knowledge you can call your own,
With an inner desire that's set on fire --
And you ask a brother, sister, or friend
Who looks in answer and says, "Never Mind"?
You have to be deaf to understand.

What it is like in a corner to stand,
Though there's nothing you've done really wrong,
Other than try to make use of your hands
To a silent peer to communicate
A thought that comes to your mind all at once?
You have to be deaf to understand.

What is it like to be shouted at
When one thinks that will help you to hear;
Or misunderstand the words of a friend
Who is trying to make a joke clear,
And you don't get the point because he's failed?
You have to be deaf to understand.

What is it like to be laughed in the face
When you try to repeat what is said;
Just to make sure that you've understood,
And you find that the words were misread --
And you want to cry out, "Please help me, friend"?
You have to be deaf to understand.

What is it like to have to depend
Upon one who can hear to phone a friend;
Or place a call to a business firm
And be forced to share what's personal, and,
Then find that your message wasn't made clear?
You have to be deaf to understand.

What is it like to be deaf and alone
In the company of those who can hear --
And you only guess as you go along,
For no one's there with a helping hand,
As you try to keep up with words and song?
You have to be deaf to understand.

What is it like on the road of life
To meet with a stranger who opens his mouth --
And speaks out a line at a rapid pace;
And you can't understand the look in his face
Because it is new and you're lost in the race?
You have to be deaf to understand.

What is it like to comprehend
Some nimble fingers that paint the scene,
And make you smile and feel serene,
With the "spoken word" of the moving hand
That makes you part of the word at large?
You have to be deaf to understand.

What is it like to "hear" a hand?
Yes, you have to be deaf to understand.
This is a wonderful poem that shares things hearing people don't even think about. May we share this poem on our social media? We are a disability-owned, woman-owned company that is striving to help individuals who are Deaf or Hard of Hearing to live, learn and work independently. We are Vu Speech, located at vuspeech.com. Thank you for letting us know if you approve of us reposting your poem. info@vuspeech.com is our email. Looking forward to your reply, Rose
 

n.bex

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That poem hit me in the feels. Wow! How relatable is this post!

Honestly coming from a Late deafened perspective, I never realized just how absent-minded, and even a little privileged the hearing can be at times. Honestly I can see it from both sides. My social interaction has declined within my group of hearing friends. as I feel I am a chore to be around for them. This doesn't make them bad people, but like you said. : "you have to be deaf to understand" Asking anyone to adjust to your world is hard. I think sometimes the hearing can be sometimes selfish in expecting us to adjust to theirs rather than make small adjustments to be included in ours. However, that isn't always the experience, but more often than not.

I think trying to grasp how incredibly challenging it is to adjust to a hearing world and keep up the level of communication they have is no easy task. It is mentally draining. I find when I get home from a day of reading lips and trying to decipher meetings when multiple people are speaking has me so exhausted, I shelter in place so to speak, to avoid interaction!

I feel like for the hearing it is more so scared of what they don't understand, and perhaps that is a lot of where the "disregard or absent-mindedness comes from. The Alien effect as I like to call it. Let me isolate this person from my direct interactions and cast them off in my mind to an "area 51" so I don't have to deal with that type of intimidating change to be able to converse with them. Again, this is what I have experienced after confronting my hearing friends about this topic. I think it is important to have those conversations and like you said- make them realize just how important both sides are and how, though different, do not have to be divided when coexisting.

i love your post, and I totally feel that when I started interacting with the deaf community after my accident, I felt a sense of acceptance that I can't describe. That feeling of being heard and seen by someone who " gets it" was so pivotal! I think for someone to day to be involved in a hearing world, makes you better is perhaps not the right use of words. Perhaps their words came from a place of wonder? Sometimes the hearing can say things that have different interpretation's of what they are looking for. perhaps they actually want to learn how to play in your world as well. Overall, I think environment has huge impacts on a person's well being. If you feel more comfortable being mostly around the deaf community, then only you can make those choices for your well-being. As an avid people pleaser, know that you WILL NEVER please everyone. People are going to get their feelings regardless of whatever choices you make, but no one lives your life for you. So do what is best for you :)

Thank you for posting something so relatable and sharing with us your amazing poetry :)

-Bex
 

Jennpolym

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The poem above really spoke to me. I am not deaf or hard of hearing but I felt so much of it very personally. Thank you so much for posting such a beautiful poem.

I really don't belong here. My hearing is quite good in both ears and I love music. I have a very nice sound system. But I find many things on these forums that help me. I probably shouldn't post this but the amazing poem above has inspired me to take a big risk and post a poem I wrote recently.

-Jennifer

The Stupidest Kid in Class

When I was three
I would sit on my mother’s lap in a big comfy chair
Right next to the big glass sliding doors
Bright sunbeams came streaming into the room
I could see down the hill to the lake
It was bright blue and very beautiful to me
She would read aloud to me
Pointed at the words she was reading on the page
I loved when I could visually follow along
I slowly learned to read
I read everything I could get my hands on

But my family had many problems
My mother had terrible moods
I was the only one who could help her
Everyone else left the house
My father expected a lot of me
Which I could not do nearly well enough
Nothing I did was ever good enough
I spent most of my childhood outdoors alone
I raised myself with help from a very nice cat
The only game I played with the other kids was kick the can
Which was all about hiding

The first day of kindergarten
The other kids all milled about and talked a lot
I couldn’t understand most of what they were saying
Their voices were excited and loud
The sound of it was very painful to me
I was terrified of them
I did not fit in at all
I felt all alone and scared
I just wanted to go home and never come back
At nap time we laid on mats in dim lighting
Everyone was very quiet
The girl next to me leaned over closer to me
Whispered “I’m afraid too”
We instantly became best friends
She was my only friend for many years

I was the stupidest kid in kindergarten
I was the last by months to learn to tie my shoes
I couldn’t tell time on a clock with hands
The teacher taught all of us how to do these things
I heard her voice talking
But the words made no sense at all
“Fig ober un dee dur loose”
The other kids seemed to understand
But I just stood there
The other kids laughed at me
I almost never talked in school
Talking was so hard to do
I talked very slow and stammered
I made stupid mistakes
I sounded really stupid
When I did talk out of desperation
It just made everything worse

In first grade I understood a little more
But it was still mostly gibberish
I tried really, really hard to figure it out
But it just made no sense most of the time
I could understand the teacher sometimes
When everyone else was gone and it was really quiet
It was still mostly gibberish
“You nod to pray attain den bitter”
But I could often guess what she meant

I was the worst student in second grade
My seat was in the back of the room
The other kids back there whispered to each other all the time
I heard the teacher’s voice
But it was complete gibberish
I didn’t get my class work done
If I did turn it in it came back with a D or F
I couldn’t read what she wrote on the board
Unless I walked closer
Which got me screamed at and often sent to the principal’s office
I learned to squint through a small hole I made with my thumb and index finger
I could read the board doing that
The teacher made me stop doing that

Third grade changed my life
The teacher was new and young
When I got to class the first day
The desks were in rows and columns facing the board
She told me to take any seat
Once everyone was in a seat
She told us to break up into groups of 4 or less
Make a group with our friends
Move our desks anywhere we wanted in the room
Push our desks together as a small group

My best friend Babette and I moved our desks together
Away from everyone else and near the door
The teacher didn’t use the board
She taught each small group one at a time
While the other groups worked together
Talking quietly and helping each other on their assignments

She taught Babette and I together
She spoke slowly and clearly, pausing for a few seconds after each phrase
She always had a pad of paper
Sketched what she was trying to teach us
She was very positive with us two stupid kids
Encouraged Babette and I to excel academically
And we did
Babette and I were soon the smartest kids in the class
All the kids seemed to blossom in this class

In fourth grade I sat in the back
The desks were in rows and columns
The teacher stood at the board
But mostly just talked
I understood very little of it
I zoned out all the time
Got hit by the teacher a lot for not paying attention
I did well academically
The teacher followed the books
I just had to read them and take the tests and quizzes

When I was 24 I got a new job
Which came with PPO health insurance
Every year I went to a different audiologist
Tried to describe what I was experiencing
They’d do a tone test
Say that my hearing was excellent in both ears
And send me home

I had lots of trouble communicating at work
Everyone quickly knew that I struggled with it
Sitting and working alone was best
I learned to communicate mostly by email
Even to the person sitting in the next cubicle
I was good at what I did
Got lots of patent awards and bonuses
I got promoted a lot

Being more senior
I had to attend more group meetings
I had to participate
I could no longer get away with just zoning out
People often talked over each other
There was lots of noisy crosstalk
Sometimes the heat or air conditioning was too loud
I really struggled to understand what was being said
I was mentally exhausted after just a few minutes
I often zoned out even though I knew it would cause problems later

When I was the most senior person in a meeting
Which happened more and more as I got promoted
I would sometimes slap my hand loudly on the conference table
Like a gun shot
Which shut everyone up immediately
I would request that the last person who spoke repeat what they had just said
Very slowly and clearly
And requested everyone else to keep quiet
I could understand most of what the person said
Having to guess at maybe half the words
The projects I led were all very commercially successful
But sometimes the upper managers
Thought I was too difficult to communicate with
I often chose to move to another department when that happened

Eventually, I got laid off along with many others
I messed up every job interview
Even though it was usually a quiet interview room
I frequently couldn’t understand the questions
Too many of the words were gibberish
I made too many mistakes
The interviewers got testy when I asked them to repeat too often
I felt defective and hopeless

I saw a very different audiologist
The audio tests in the booth
Were really painful and exhausting
I got really frustrated and aggravated
It went on and on for what felt like days
I nearly got up and left several times
I was diagnosed with APD with a severe impairment
She told me it was about as bad as it gets
And was probably very debilitating
I learned a few new coping methods
Tried to get auditory training but it was so expensive
I still felt very isolated and alone

I am now dealing with two other severe childhood issues
Talk therapy just doesn’t work for me
It’s hard work to try to comprehend what she says
I misunderstand way too much of it
I am mentally exhausted after 10 minutes
I get frustrated and angry and depressed
I dread therapy even though I can read her lips
If I listen to her audible talking and read her lips I can understand her better
But I slowly go stupid and get mentally exhausted
My auditory memory is really bad
I rarely remember what happened in the last session
I don’t make good notes after each session like she wants me to
I am exhausted and often reeling from a very emotional session
It’s just too much work

I feel like I am doing all the adapting
Reaching across a big communication and culture gap
I have to reach all the way across the gap
She won’t meet me halfway
Even though she knows I have APD and has read my CAP assessment
It’s just too hard sometimes
And I am just exhausted by it all

Nobody seems to really see me
So many seem to think I am stupid
It’s so much work just to get through the day
It’s easier to be alone
I feel like a recluse
But I love being with people
As long as I can communicate with them
I often can one-on-one in a very quiet place
It’s exhausting but I often really enjoy the conversation
 

Jane B.

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Jennpolym
I don't know all the acronyms that were used in posts but to me what you wrote reads like the first problem was eyesight and you never quite caught up. It also looks to me like you might be good at ASL if you get a chance to learn it.
 

deerheart12

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Even though she knows I have APD and has read my CAP assessment

Thank you for sharing your lovely poem/story! I see that you have APD which stands for Auditory Processing Disorder? I'm typing this out so others can see your condition/issues.

Sounds rough growing up with this disorder when it's not very well known or understood. Glad that you did had a lovely positive teacher to help you and some amazing patience friends.

Like what Jane B. mentioned have you tried taking in ASL classes? I met some people with APD and they have really enjoyed using sign language and have blossomed with it.

There have been some APD here on this forum from time to time. So they are out there.

Definitely find another therapist/counselor who will meet your communication needs. Not all therapists work with everyone.

Have you tried using the Google Live Transcribe app? If you're someone that likes to read you might really like using this app to help you out with communications.

You can even say I'm hard of hearing (even though you're not) to people that you will meet shortly so you can get your communication needs quickly.

Just giving you out ideas and tips for you to cope if you haven't use these already.

And know that you're not alone lots of people have experience this degree of isolation in one form or another in whatever they are dealing with. :)
Hugs I hope you have a nice day!
Annie - Deerheart
 

Jennpolym

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Thank you for sharing your lovely poem/story! I see that you have APD which stands for Auditory Processing Disorder? I'm typing this out so others can see your condition/issues.

Sounds rough growing up with this disorder when it's not very well known or understood. Glad that you did had a lovely positive teacher to help you and some amazing patience friends.

Like what Jane B. mentioned have you tried taking in ASL classes? I met some people with APD and they have really enjoyed using sign language and have blossomed with it.

There have been some APD here on this forum from time to time. So they are out there.

Definitely find another therapist/counselor who will meet your communication needs. Not all therapists work with everyone.

Have you tried using the Google Live Transcribe app? If you're someone that likes to read you might really like using this app to help you out with communications.

You can even say I'm hard of hearing (even though you're not) to people that you will meet shortly so you can get your communication needs quickly.

Just giving you out ideas and tips for you to cope if you haven't use these already.

And know that you're not alone lots of people have experience this degree of isolation in one form or another in whatever they are dealing with. :)
Hugs I hope you have a nice day!
Annie - Deerheart
Thank you for your kind and helpful comments.

I would be very interested in meeting other people with APD on the site.

When I was younger I started ASL class twice but I was put in the hearing class and the instruction was all verbal and I didn't understand much and quit in frustration after a few weeks. Are ASL classes offered for adults who are hard of hearing or deaf? Or just can't cope in a class for hearing people?

Indeed, the condition I have is called Auditory Processing Disorder or APD. I was officially diagnosed about a year and half ago. I had never heard of it. I learned of it because I was in a program for people with another condition I have and all the patients in the program turned out to have APD. So I sought out an audiologist that specializes in APD. She works mostly with young kids experiencing learning problems in school. I was very surprised when she told me that about 9% of people in the U.S. have APD. Most kids respond fairly well to the coping methods she teaches and learn to avoid situations where their APD will cause significant problems, like parties, social events, loud or/and noisy environments such as busy restaurants, bars, clubs, etc. She told me my APD impairment was quite severe and most people with APD have far fewer problems. She did introduce me to the Ava app, but it costs so much to use the high reliability mode and I don't seem to qualify for any of the financial assistance. The free mode is unreliable so I haven't been using it much.

I am very confused that APD is so common and yet nobody seems to know it exists. Everyone seems to know what deaf and heard of hearing are. I have been asked so many times in my life if I am deaf or hard of hearing and I said no, which did not help. Perhaps I should say yes, or even lead with that.

The CAP assessment mentioned in the poem is a Central Auditory Processing (CAP) assessment, which assesses all the brain functions involved in comprehending spoken speech.

The remainder of this post is probably way TMI. Sorry.

APD occurs when the auditory cortex, which is a part of the brain, has been damaged and does not function properly. The auditory cortex is located kind above and slightly behind each ear. The two parts of the auditory cortex are in vulnerable locations and are very susceptible to damage from blows to the head when very young, which is probably what happened to me. To comprehend spoken speech, the auditory cortex converts the nerve impulses from the inner ear (which represent the sounds the ear heard) into words that the cognitive part of the brain can understand.

The primary coping method for most people with APD is to learn to use one's cognitive part of the brain to help the auditory cortex do its job better. Unfortunately, using one's cognitive ability in this way introduces 2 to 3 seconds of delay in comprehending the words, which makes participating in group conversations very difficult. This coping method also reduces the brain's cognitive capacity and so I go stupid. When I go stupid, I fall behind after a sequence of more than 6 to 10 words unless there is a 2 to 3 second pause before more words are spoken. Using my brain's cognitive capacity in this way also causes me to become mentally exhausted. Verbose people and/or people who talk fast usually get extremely frustrated trying to communicate with me audibly.

Lip reading is also a common coping method for APD and usually augments the primary coping method described above. I am not a great lip reader and so don't do always comprehend everything that people say when there is no sound, for example, when the TV is muted.

Closed captions are essential for me when watching movies and make them easy to watch and enjoyable without any mental strain.

-Jennifer
 

Jane B.

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I have long used Google's FREE Live Transcribe on an Android phone and really like it. As anything we humans create it is not 100% but I find even the errors understandable from context by far most of the time. Some are even memorable. Like the time it had my pastor saying that Jesus was born in a bar rather than a barn!
 

zephren

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Thank you for your kind and helpful comments.

I would be very interested in meeting other people with APD on the site.

When I was younger I started ASL class twice but I was put in the hearing class and the instruction was all verbal and I didn't understand much and quit in frustration after a few weeks. Are ASL classes offered for adults who are hard of hearing or deaf? Or just can't cope in a class for hearing people?

Indeed, the condition I have is called Auditory Processing Disorder or APD. I was officially diagnosed about a year and half ago. I had never heard of it. I learned of it because I was in a program for people with another condition I have and all the patients in the program turned out to have APD. So I sought out an audiologist that specializes in APD. She works mostly with young kids experiencing learning problems in school. I was very surprised when she told me that about 9% of people in the U.S. have APD. Most kids respond fairly well to the coping methods she teaches and learn to avoid situations where their APD will cause significant problems, like parties, social events, loud or/and noisy environments such as busy restaurants, bars, clubs, etc. She told me my APD impairment was quite severe and most people with APD have far fewer problems. She did introduce me to the Ava app, but it costs so much to use the high reliability mode and I don't seem to qualify for any of the financial assistance. The free mode is unreliable so I haven't been using it much.

I am very confused that APD is so common and yet nobody seems to know it exists. Everyone seems to know what deaf and heard of hearing are. I have been asked so many times in my life if I am deaf or hard of hearing and I said no, which did not help. Perhaps I should say yes, or even lead with that.

The CAP assessment mentioned in the poem is a Central Auditory Processing (CAP) assessment, which assesses all the brain functions involved in comprehending spoken speech.

The remainder of this post is probably way TMI. Sorry.

APD occurs when the auditory cortex, which is a part of the brain, has been damaged and does not function properly. The auditory cortex is located kind above and slightly behind each ear. The two parts of the auditory cortex are in vulnerable locations and are very susceptible to damage from blows to the head when very young, which is probably what happened to me. To comprehend spoken speech, the auditory cortex converts the nerve impulses from the inner ear (which represent the sounds the ear heard) into words that the cognitive part of the brain can understand.

The primary coping method for most people with APD is to learn to use one's cognitive part of the brain to help the auditory cortex do its job better. Unfortunately, using one's cognitive ability in this way introduces 2 to 3 seconds of delay in comprehending the words, which makes participating in group conversations very difficult. This coping method also reduces the brain's cognitive capacity and so I go stupid. When I go stupid, I fall behind after a sequence of more than 6 to 10 words unless there is a 2 to 3 second pause before more words are spoken. Using my brain's cognitive capacity in this way also causes me to become mentally exhausted. Verbose people and/or people who talk fast usually get extremely frustrated trying to communicate with me audibly.

Lip reading is also a common coping method for APD and usually augments the primary coping method described above. I am not a great lip reader and so don't do always comprehend everything that people say when there is no sound, for example, when the TV is muted.

Closed captions are essential for me when watching movies and make them easy to watch and enjoyable without any mental strain.

-Jennifer
Some people with APD use the hard of hearing label to let people know they don’t hear/understand speech like a hearing person and may struggle. What you described is essentially the same as what HH people go through.

If you was to learn ASL, before signing up as of the instructor is Deaf and teaches using voice-off l, ASL immersion approach. That would help you know if it is a good fit for what you need. It’s infuriating that some ASL classes are taught using speech and not accessible to deaf/hh students.

Lip reading is hard regardless. On tv it’s extra hard because speech happens off camera, with odd camera angles, too far from the speaker, etc.
 
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