Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Paying Attention

Sick smile           You Weren't Paying Attention!

             When I was working in church years ago doing a side job the person in charge, often accused me of not listening.  Especially on that day when a man name George came in with a set of tools.  He gave some kind of speech for an hour standing across the room.    I did my best to try to listen to  George by watching him talk the whole hour.  Unfortunately he had a beard and I couldn’t lip read half of what he said. So I didn’t understand any of the instructions.    I got very bored watching him talk.   George stepped backwards and tripped over a bucket of paint, which spilled all over the floor.    One thing I did hear was him swearing, the F word.  It was loud and clear. That’s all I heard.
  angry man                                                  Devil 
Then Chucky the person that hired me, told me to do what George told us to do.   Confused as I was,I tried to explain to Chucky that I didn’t get what George was talking about.   Then Chucky got mad and said  that I heard what the man was telling me, I was looking right at him the whole time.    And I tried to explain  that I didn’t understand what he was telling me to do.  That’s when Chucky flipped out.    He said that I wasn’t  paying attention and for me to stop playing games.
         smile     Crying face
Boy, did he make me feel bad.   He wasn’t very  understanding when I tried to explain about my hearing problem.  Well either he was having a bad day, or just wasn’t educated on this subject.   So don’t assume that a deaf person is  going to understand everything you say just because they are looking right at you when you talk.   And please don’t get impatient with deaf people when they can’t figure out what you said, if they can’t lip read you at the time.    People need to understand that deaf people can’t hear, and it’s not always easy to lip read others, especially from a distance.   It’s hard I know for the deaf at times.


  1. Yes, I guess it is very hard for you and others at time. In the hearing world we really don't always think about deaf people in this way. Sometimes even when we know that someone is deaf we presume that if they watch our lips, they will automatically understand everything that is being said.

    Susana, this might sound like a stupid question but, do you understand if someone was to speak in 'slang' or do they have to use proper words when speaking to you?

  2. That's a good question. Sometimes, but not often I can make out those words. If the person has an accent, mumbles, or talks too low or too fast, I won't be able to lip read that. You brought up a good thought here, thanks. :)

  3. I could never lip read for an hour, I give you much credit for that in the first place. Hearing people must learn that if we do lipread them at all that we only understand about 30% of what is being said on their lips.
    If they have beards or mustache, forget it!!
    I personally cannot lipread stranger, I can lipread some family members because I know them well.

  4. You are right about this. I find it extremely tiring to sit there and lipread anyone for an hour. My eyes get tired and it is exhausting. And that is true, I never make out all the words when I lipread. Just some of them, and if I'm lucky, most of the words, but not all.


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