No more Q&A videos for a while!
Hello and welcome. I was tagged to do the Disability Misconceptions Tag by Rikki Poynter so that’s what I’m doing today. I will link Rikki’s video here, and the original tag which was done by Nicola here. There are just five questions, so this probably will be short and sweet. Let’s get started.
What is your disability and how does it impact you? If it wasn’t already obvious, I’m deaf. That’s the only disability I have. As for how it impacts me… In my personal, everyday life, it doesn’t really impact me because most people I’m friends with and hang out with sign. Deaf or hearing, most of them sign. But as for in general, work-related… Communication. Communication is the biggest thing that impacts my everyday life. If I go to a restaurant or whatever, I have to change to writing or typing on my phone what I want to order. If a random person comes up to me on the street and starts talking, I don’t understand. It’s the little things like that. But one big impact that it does have is it’s that much harder for me to find a job. When I apply for a job at whatever place, I have to consider: will this workplace be willing to accommodate my deafness? Will this be a good place for a deaf person to work? Can this job be done by a deaf person? Generally, yes, but there are little things that come with that job that I see, maybe that one thing I definitely can’t do. I have to tell them, if they pick me for this job, that I can’t do that one thing. Like for example, a front desk job or something, I can do most of the tasks, no problem. Except when one, someone calls the front desk. That can be fixed by setting up a VP (videophone) number. But will they think of that? Two, if it’s a front desk job, that means there will be people coming up to the desk and talking. Will the workplace be willing to let me do that? Generally, it’s not really that much of a concern, but it depends on the workplace. That’s the biggest impact on my life. I still don’t have a job, I’ve been looking for a while. That’s part of why I’m struggling to search for jobs, because I’m always second-guessing myself. Asking all these questions – can I apply there? Will they be accepting? I know I really need to stop listening to that voice, but it’s hard.
What is the most common misconception that you experience in regards to your disability? The most common misconception is one that I think applies to a lot of people who have disabilities, not just being deaf, but any other disability. It’s that we can’t do anything. It would be too much work to accommodate for our needs, when really, it’s not. In my case, often, I can do fine. I just sometimes need an interpreter, or need people to write things down. It’s not that much of a adjustment, but that’s what a lot of people think. “Oh gosh, I have to do this, this, and this.” Really, it’s not that difficult.
Which misconception annoys you the most? What I previously said, that’s one that annoys me, but this annoys me maybe even more. A lot of people think that deaf people are all the same. We are a HUGE community, bigger than you think. When has a group of any size ever been all the same?
Do you do anything to combat these misconceptions? Yes, I make YouTube videos! I also technically do this blog, but this is mostly just text posts of the videos I make. I’ve mentioned it in my videos/posts before, but I do this to show that deaf people are just like you. We have thoughts, we have feelings, we’re just like anyone else.
What more do you think can be done to combat the misconception around your disability? My broad answer to this is visibility. Visibility is a big thing, so two main things people can do. First, no matter who you are, share information about disabilities. Share. Don’t just look at it and say, “Oh, that’s cool. That’s really cool you’re doing this. Great.” …Then do nothing. Share the things. If you watch and do nothing, that information won’t go anywhere. Second, have more representation of us in media. Whatever that is – news, TV shows, movies, books, you name it. Show us. Yes, the deaf community has been having more visibility lately. The Silent Child just won an Oscar. That’s great! That’s one big step. There’s been more plays with deaf actors in them, TV shows with deaf characters (This Close!), news articles, and deaf stories. We’re having more visibility, yes, but we need more. What we’re seeing now is not all of the stories we have. So, big answer for any disability, not just the deaf community – VISIBILITY.
That’s it for the disability misconceptions tag. This was a lot shorter than my previous three videos, but that’s a good thing! I’m going to tag a few people, and if you’ve already been tagged for this, consider this a push to do it.
I think I’ll stop there. If you saw this and you want to do this, and you haven’t been tagged, go ahead and do it! Be sure to credit the original creator of this, Nicola. Remember, I linked her earlier. Let me know what your answers would be to this if you want in the comments!
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