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How to wake a deaf person

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It is not easy for many people to wake up in the morning. They put off the alarm several times and only a short time later reluctantly get out of bed. Deafness presents a person with additional difficulties. In the absence of hearing, he is forced to rely on other possibilities to wake himself up in the morning. Thanks to outside help, modern technology, other feelings or a specially trained dog, deaf people can also wake up in time and start a new day.

Social experiment: how I became deaf and dumb for one day

  • Activism
  • Social projects
15.04.2015 13:14

How does a completely deaf person feel? Few people think about this until they encounter a problem.

In order to feel really deaf, I buy ear plugs. I’ll put them on when I don’t need to hear people's opinions about me in order to understand what difficulties the deaf still have to face - in the subway, but it’s time to walk.

In connection with the purchase, the first obstacle to my new deaf-mute life was an alarm clock. I woke up not because of his sound, but because I was shaken by the disgruntled awakened roommates.

But since the main thing that I want to experience from my own experience - the attitude of society towards people with hearing and speech impairments - I have to drop my pride and "go out into the light." I decide to start small, in order to better get into the role: I go to a stop, pull out earplugs from my ears. Having waved my hands in front of the people standing next to me, I understand that there’s nothing to be agreed upon. People startled aside scared. I write on the notebook sheet "How to get to the store" Prostor "?" And again I begin to bother passersby.

An elderly woman at first does not understand, says the bus numbers. I wave my hands, point to my ears - I can’t hear, they say, write, point on fingers. With grief in half I am seeking an answer. But the young girl immediately understands and without the hassle of words she writes the necessary trolley buses.

I complicate the task. Perhaps, every Minsker who was full in terms of speech and hearing at least once in his life came across rudeness of service personnel. Especially sellers, who are often annoyed by the intelligibility and lack of understanding of buyers. But what if the buyer is not just “dull”, but also deaf and dumb?

Of course, the abundance of supermarkets greatly facilitates the process of buying products for people with disabilities. Therefore, I myself am looking for a way to "get to the bottom" of sellers. And the first thing I'm going to is the meat department. I need to buy four sausages at 53 thousand per kilogram. I point my finger at the sausages, on my other hand I protrude 4 fingers. I completely ignore the question “these?”, Giving the woman an opportunity to guess herself. Everything is relatively successful, except for the suspicious gaze of the saleswoman.

Next is the worst. I appeal to the store workers, who lay out the products on the shelves. I'm trying to explain with signs that I need a department with tea bags. The employees exchanged glances, looking suspiciously, as a result waving somewhere in a completely different direction and dissatisfiedly muttering something like "Everyones go here ...".

By the way, at the checkout everything turned out to be extremely simple. The amount is written on an electronic scoreboard, and the saleswoman did not pay attention to my excessive silence, even when I stared blankly at the answer to her question, “Will there be five hundred rubles?”. Apparently, they rarely meet talkative buyers.

The last in line clerical department. There I try to buy a pen and pencil. The main sign here is as if I'm writing something. The saleswoman clarifies, I am silent, she rummages dissatisfiedly under the window, gives a pen. It’s harder with a pencil: I show the same sign, with my finger on a pen and I cross my arms - “no,” and again manipulate an imaginary pencil. “Another? Does not write? Well you didn’t try! ”- the woman is nervous. The situation repeats, as a result I leave without a pencil.

In total, for my “deaf-mute day,” I manage to find out the way by writing a question on a piece of paper (showing “Prostor” on my fingers would be tantamount to suicide), buy sausages and a pen. The pencil and tea bags, alas, “flew by.”

It is hard to imagine how much hearing helps even in petty everyday activities. In order to fully appreciate this, I needed ear plugs. When you go on the subway, you can’t relax and just read a book - you constantly look, as if not to pass the necessary platform. In this regard, the Moscow metro with a running line, where the next station is indicated, is different for the better. The same situation with land transport - somewhere there is such a necessary device, somewhere not.

Of course, in my case there was no question of listening to music on headphones. Caught in ear plugs, I could not hear when the water for soup began to boil, the kettle turned off and milk for coffee ran out — I had to constantly monitor this, look under the lid. It is impossible to hear such small but important sounds as Internet notifications, phone calls, the sound of an elevator that arrived or an approaching car. Of course, this noticeably annoyed others. But the only thing I could do was to maximize my attention and turn my head 360 degrees to see as many as possible — rushing cars, arrived elevators, people walking nearby, whose footsteps were now impossible to hear.

Various devices have now been created that can make life easier for the deaf - a vibrating alarm cushion, hearing aids, a dispatch video service for the deaf is organized in Russia. However, the main issue remains the attitude of people towards the deaf-mute. And even “tolerant” Belarusians have it only until the moment when it is not necessary to explain something. As soon as it becomes necessary to fortune-propose, everything immediately goes bad. The most common mistake made by those who hear is that they try to shout in the ear of the deaf what they did not hear for the first time. If a person is deaf, he will not hear. And the fact that many deaf-mutes can read lips, in such a situation brings them only frustration.

And the terrible irony is that each of the disgruntled people who looked askance at me is not immune at least from senile deafness.

WFD statistics show that one in nine people with hearing loss.

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