Rikki Poynter – Being Deaf Or Hard Of Hearing And Socializing
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[Rikki Poynter – Being Deaf Or Hard Of Hearing And Socializing]
[Rikki Poynter:] Source: LYBIO.net
Okay, let’s talk about something we all love to do. Socializing! No, we don’t. Actually, we’re gonna talk about something else which is being deaf or hard of hearing and socializing. And no matter how many times I explain that these three things are different, people don’t understand the difference between these three things, so I’m going to put a little explanation about these three things.
One more for kicks. In a nutshell, all of this can be very frustrating.
When it comes to socializing, a lot of people like to go out to the clubs, go to the movies, go out to eat. And what do all of these things have in common? A lot of commotion. A lot of background noise. All in all, a lot of distractions. And like I said in the very first Deaf Awareness video, which I would really love to redo; Background noise and distractions is a complete nightmare for anyone who has a significant amount of hearing loss.
We interrupt this broadcast with Devon snapchatting me and, of course, I can’t not respond. Right, so we have all this other commotion happening right beside of my mouth right now, right? And by the time I get to this video, I can imagine that whatever sound is coming out of Mr. Andrew’s mouth right now is… hello, you three. It’s probably, you know, messing with whatever I’m saying and my voice and whatever else.
Closed captioning that while I edit it is probably gonna be a pain in my own ass. Or ears.
Now I’ve only been to one club ever in my life and that was when I went to go see Chad Michaels at a drag show. I had a nice little chat with the bartender at one point or another during the night and it was very hard understanding him. One – it was very dark. Two – music and lots of other people talking very loudly. All of that happening while I’m trying to socialize makes it harder for me to understand what he’s saying. I mentioned this before – I don’t lip read very well. Even the “expert lip reader”. Generally, only 30% of the English language is read on the lips “clearly”.
So it’s too dark for me to look at him and attempt to read what I do recognize on the mouth. The one wild guy that was always there drinking the whole time was very loud and always near me so that made it harder for me to focus on the sound that was coming out of the bartender’s mouth. With restaurants, it’s the same thing. Not only the background noise and the music, if there’s music, lighting – When people are chewing and drinking and all of that – When there’s something inside the mouth, it affects the shape of the mouth when you’re talking so, uhm, again – So, again, English or any language – not read very well at all. And don’t get me started on the movie theater.
Closed captioning has not been available in the cinema until very recently. For the past year or two, I think, uhm, glasses have been available and there’s also been the little Captiview thing. I’ll put a picture here. It makes a very nice weapon in case anybody pisses you off in the cinema. I’m just sayin’. Whoo!
I’ve been to the cinema lots of times. Most of the movies that I’ve seen at the cinema had no closed captioning whatsoever and while I could obviously hear the movie, being hard of hearing, I didn’t understand what was being said. Headphones were available at some cinemas, but all that did was make things louder. It didn’t make anything clearer. Trust me when I say that having earphones in and watching YouTube videos is easier than going to the cinema and watching a movie. So while all of my friends or anybody is watching the movie while I’m with them, they’re understanding the movie and they can talk about it and they’re enjoying the movie, and while I can enjoy the visual parts of the movie and understand a word or a sentence here or there, I’m not getting the majority of the movie. So when the movie is over and everybody’s leaving the cinema and they talk about it, I’m kind of like, “Oh. Oh, okay.” “Hey, Rikki! What about that one part where that one guy was doing that one thing?” “Huh? Yeah. Yeah. That – That – That was hilarious.” Now, that doesn’t mean that I’ve never had any fun socializing. It doesn’t mean none of us have never had any fun socializing with people who can hear significantly better than we can.
Recently, I went to the winter solstice party and while there were some complications and there were some people that I couldn’t understand, karaoke night was happening or a lot of great laughs, and it was a really fun time. Chasity, Gene, Rachael and I, we go out. We go out to dinner and we have coffee. We have great conversations. It’s really fun. My friend, Whitney, and I, we go do things. Always fun. This brings me to the whole asking preferred communication methods and whatnot. If you’re hanging out with a person who is deaf or hard of hearing and they don’t know what you’re saying, one – repeat yourself. Two – if repeating the same words does not work, reword it. There have been times when I haven’t understood a question or a sentence and, finally, they would change the words around and then I got it.
[Rikki Poynter:] Source: LYBIO.net
If you need to, cellphone. Type it. I’ve had to do that quite a few times. When I was hanging out with Coen and Paul a little while ago when I drove to Asheville to see them, I had Paul pull out his cellphone once because I couldn’t understand him when we were at the cafe. And this was also a perfect example of me understanding one person and not understanding all of the other person. With Coen, I understood almost everything he said perfectly. With Paul, there was a bit of an issue here and there, but it wasn’t complicated. We pulled out a cellphone. He texted me. Done. Honestly, there have been times when I’ve just said, “Oh, no. I’ll just stay in tonight and you all can go have fun,” because it can be very awkward. Obviously, being deaf or hard of hearing is a lot more hidden and invisible than it is visible.
So it’s unfortunately easy for a group of people to completely forget that you’re not gonna understand what the hell is going on, probably. So, piece of advice to you hearing people who might have somebody with a little bit of hearing in your group: Repeat yourselves. Don’t forget that they’re sitting at the table. If you need to, write or type stuff down. It can be awkward but it doesn’t have to be even more awkward than it already is when you’re hanging out with them.
I could give you a list of all the horror stories I’ve read of my other deaf or hard of hearing friends on the Internet attempting to socialize and that turned out to be a huge bust because the hearing just kind of was annoyed by the whole thing and didn’t really care to be like, “Oh, shit, I’m sorry. Let me accommodate and tweak this a little bit,” and that’s no fun.
We wanna hang out and we wanna do stuff, okay? As much as I love sitting down and going on Tumblr and watching Gilmore Girls on Netflix, I don’t always want to sit on the couch.
So, with that being said, I am going to be done with this video. Okay! Alright. I will see you in my next video. Bye.
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Rikki Poynter – Being Deaf Or Hard Of Hearing And Socializing. We’re gonna talk about something else which is being deaf or hard of hearing and socializing. Howto & Style Transcript, Dialogue, Remarks, Saying, Quotes, Words And Text.