From the October 2012 magazine.

October 2012: Quiet Love

A deaf member's life is changed when his home group steps up to service

In 1979, I was forced into early retirement by the corporation I worked for, and by society, due to becoming too deaf to understand the spoken word; too deaf to respond to instructions; too deaf to mingle with fellow humans.

I turned to alcohol as a way to bide my time in a hearing society. I am not discounting other special needs people, but deafness has its own unique problems. When a person can no longer communicate in society they are labeled as "stupid," laughed at and shunned. Most deaf people keep to themselves and shut out hearing people as a result of the communication gap. We deaf people become tired of people laughing at us when they do not understand what we are saying. We shy away from society because—due to a lack of understanding—society shuns us. And yes, often we comfort ourselves with booze.

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