So, you know when you get a glimpse into a world, and it’s so beautiful you just want to stay, that’s Deaf Out Loud.
The families (The Garcias, The Mansfields, and the The Posners) have different views on living deaf, but one thing they all agree on, they’re all people first and foremost, they’re not a demographic, they’re not a cause. The beauty comes from watching the fam dynamic, from watching the fluidity of their communication. It’s like hearing an accent, but with hands, facial expressions, and body language…and, voices if they choose.
I’m gonna break down the fams with our thoughts:
The Garcias are a foster fam with hearing and deaf kids. Their core storyline’s based around the youngest. His teacher calls saying he’s not wearing his hearing aids. Come to find out they aren’t working for him. They decide to check out the local deaf school, which the kid digs.
I agree the kid needs to be in an environment he’ll succeed in, and I understand hearing aids are hella expensive, so the deaf school’s probably the best place for him. On the same note, he’ll be missing out on hearing kid interaction, which could slow his growth in real world situations. Again, on the same note, he’s in a unique situation having sibs that hear, so he still has to use his ingenuity to communicate since sibs aren’t always nice and fair. Still, we’re talking about a controlled environment, so the parental units’ll still need to push him in the real world.
The Mansfields are both deaf parental units, who’ve got two daughters, one deaf, the other hearing. Their storyline focusses on people’s perception of their parenting ability. At one point, they talked about someone accusing them of abusing their daughter, because they signed to her instead making her use her voice to be “normal”. Another segment of theirs showed how they got each other’s attention by flashing the lights when the dad was cooking, but another showed where he missed the boiling over pot.
OK, again, I ask, what’s “normal”? Because you walk and I do the EXACT same thing, just sitting, does that make you “normal”? No, that makes us different. And, bravo to the Mansfields for having certain ways to get attention. Joey and I have our own established ways of taking care of things needing to get done. Short-sighted people don’t see past the disability, they only see the “can’t”.
Joey hopes the younger daughter doesn’t get jaded being odd m an out as a hearing kid. Plus, she hopes she doesn’t influenced by kids in school, who might not be as understanding and/or caring. She was concerned when she was misbehaving. Mr. Mansfield told her to stop, but was laughing at the same time, which sends mixed signals.
The Posners were my fave fam. Both parental units are deaf with two deaf kids, Rachel and Henry. They use ASL as well as being adept lip readers. Their storyline centers around the misconceptions surrounding deaf living and the debate about the controversial cochlear implant, a device that attaches to the head outside as well as in on the cochlea nerve. They had tests to see if Henry’s a candidate for a cochlear implant. It turns out he’s not, because doesn’t have the nerve, which Mrs. Posner suspected.
I love Mrs. Posner, she’s the mom that’ll do anything to see her kids succeed, and “doesn’t give two Fs what people think”. She knows they have to live in the real world, and damn it, they will. As far as the cochlear goes, Mr. Posner raises the issue of some recipients getting headaches from the implant from, say, the frequency emitted. That’d suck for an adult, but for a kid…I can’t imagine…especially when the thing’s SUPPOSED to help. When they find out Henry’s not a candidate, they take their lumps, and redirect their efforts to other methods. ADAPTING, BABY!
The show was a mere hour, I could’ve spent another or so easily. Learning other disabilities fascinates me especially when they’re go-getters like these fams that don’t know “can’t”.