Don’t you just hate it when someone doesn’t listen to you? Sure, they heard you talking or asking for something, but not listening to the specifics.
This topic has a whole range of sub-topics, but I am just going to look at the first and, for me, most important: Asking someone to write something down…
This morning, I had an appointment at my local hospital, and I wasn’t really sure where to go, but having been there before for a similar discussion, I assumed I needed to go to out-patient services to register.
So, I went there first, and hoping that my interpreter would be there. Nope, no interpreter, so I went to the registration desk like a good patient, and gave the woman my health card. I did not say anything.
I had my white cane displayed clearly, and sat down at the desk while the woman read my card. She seemed perplexed, and started to talk to me. Naturally, I said “I am Deaf,” gesturing, and asked her to “write” the question by miming writing.
Probably she had some Accessibility training because when she understood I was Deaf, she moved and faced me directly, and probably enunciated her words clearly in a whole-hearted attempt to convey her message with hopes that I could lip read her. She was oblivious to my white cane, which will be more evident in a minute.
Again, I said, verbally now, “Please write it down! I am Deaf.” At which she looked around the room hoping that a interpreter would appear, magically, or at least someone who she could converse with. No one stepped forward.
She held up a figure and disappeared behind her computer monitor, I thought, “Hurrah, she is writing it down…” but when she appeared back in view, she was on the phone!
Who was she talking to? Security? Jack Black? The correct department? It just occurred to me, as I sat there, maybe she called me wife? I got a little mad and that thought, I am not kid, you deal with me! When she hung up, she proceeded to write something down on a yellow sticky note, in a small scroll. I had to use my phone camera to read what she wrote!
Had she “listened” to me at first go: Deaf, Please write, then I would not have been mad!
There is a big misconception and understanding about lip reading that many professionals do not understand, lip reading is 95% guesswork, and 5% intuition, or was it 90% guesswork, 7% intuition and 3% luck? I would not know, having never learned this useless skill, being legally blind!
After reading the note from the out-patient receptionist, I followed her directions to the right department, my interpreter showed up a few moments later. I had my appointment and was satisfied, got some ideas and some strategies for eating!
I need to get my “business card” back, with the details about myself, my limitations, and how to communicate with me. Maybe I could put it as a permanent picture on my phone so that I can just tap it, showing the person who I am dealing with.
Yeah, I gotta do that!
Anyways… I’ll explore the “range” of not listening in next Blogs!