What are you looking at?

I had grand plans for a different post but that will have to wait a day. Something happened today that really irks my ire.

The kids and I went out to dinner (that’s a rare treat these days but none the less a whatever) while we were waiting in line a deaf couple came in and were behind us. My oldest (who is deaf) gets overly excited when he sees other deaf people in public settings and strikes up conversations. So my 16 yr old son and this couple who were in their early 60’s  were chatting away.

Now for the part that irrates me – people stopped eating to watch this conversation in ASL. For those that don’t know that is RUDE!!!! It’s no different than inserting yourself into a conversation between hearing people (aka evesdropping). As if that weren’t enough for the rest of our meal people were staring and pointing at us. I wanted to scream, “WHAT THE HECK ARE YOU LOOKING AT???!!!”

I know it’s a little different to see people converse in sign, even more so when they “look normal” but for the love of mercy they are NOT performing monkeys on a stage!!! They (we) are people having dinner and conversation like everyone else so please don’t stare. Our voiced conversations are just as strange to some deaf as the signed ones look to you. Next time you’re in public bite on that cookie, maybe then I can eat in peace.

Oh yeah and FYI – not everyone that signs is deaf so watch your mouths….. this momma bear does have claws 😉

4 replies to “What are you looking at?

  1. First and foremost, I thank you for signing with your son. I am not sure if he realizes how lucky he is to have a parent who would choose his natural language over the AVT rout. second of all… I am 23 and I still get excited when I see other Deaf adults, its an instant friend, an instant connection. Thank you for educating those who don’t understand watching someone sign isn’t polite, we are not in a zoo, we are not on TV.

      1. AVT is Auditory Verbal Therapy. Focusing only on listening and speaking, no visual clues, no ASL, no lipreading. It isn’t only in the hour or two a week, but it turns the entire life of the child as one big therapy session.

      2. That just sounds HORRIBLE!!! The way I see it there is nothing “wrong” with being deaf, it’s not something that needs to be “fixed” it just means is that a person can’t hear and sometimes that’s a blessing. You’ve just inspired a new blog post! Thanks 🙂

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