27707 / Pixabay

From Reddit user Ladymmj

Hello all. I started a new job and I didn’t disclose my hearing issues in the interview but I did wear my hair up with my hearing aids on full display. I got the job and am now 2 weeks in. One of my coworkers is not my favorite, he tends to talk down to others and loves to make jokes at others expense. Today he came up behind me and jingled his keys right next to my ear, right above my hearing aid which of course made a horrible noise right into my ear for me. I somewhat snapped and told him off for doing that right in my hearing aid. He apologized profusely and said he didn’t know I had a hearing aid. I’m wondering if I should let this go or say something to our boss. I’m all for fun and games but I would rather not have this happen again and I’m not entirely sure he didn’t know I have hearing aids as I wear my hair up most days.

And further in the post as a comment

One of the examples of him talking down is a woman in the office will ask him to do something which is her job and he will question or just not do anything she says. We also have an adult living with disabilities working with us and he will often repeat what she says in a mocking tone or ask if we heard her when she asks abnormal questions.

And again

One of my coworkers told me she can’t stand how he talks to her. I’ll talk to her today about documenting her experiences and I’ll start documenting mine.

Just goes to show you there are assholes, that’s needless to say I’m sure, but in these kinds of situations, it’s best to literally speak to your manager or go to HR with the report.  It’s likely the asshole coworker already definitely knew the hearing aid was there and was simply seeing if she could hear it which is even bigger of a dickhead move.

It’s unfortunate things like that happen, and they’re going to happen regardless.  Your best move when things like this example happen is to simply report it to HR and management so they can investigate and put in proper procedures to correct the coworker’s behavior.  It’s the path that if it continues, they have to do something about it or face potential lawsuits.

johnhain / Pixabay

It’s no surprise that that there are abusers out in the world, and there are those that are abused.  It’s an unfortunate state of affairs when a hearing person results in abusing a deaf person who already struggles excessively in life, far more than the average joe blow.  A deaf person already faces discrimination and hostility from the hearing world at large from a variety of sources for a variety of reasons, from something minor like getting irritated with our communication needs when it’s so super easy for the hearing person to just speak and hating having to write something down for us all the way to the extreme of constant online bullying and harassment to being beaten by our family or partners.

Many of us mainstreamed deafs turn to the internet as a way of dealing with our depression that stems from the feeling of isolation.  This feeling of isolation comes from the inability for us to be able to properly communicate with someone face to face, at least not easily.

To be even in a one on one conversation, lip reading and using what residual hearing we have left, if we have any at all, is not only challenging, but also mentally exhausting.  But when it comes to group settings, the cards are just not in our favor, conversations end up going on and we’re left in the dust unable to keep up.

This is why the internet is so important to mainstreamed deafs overall.  It allows us some semblance of having some form of normalcy as a way of being able to actually participate.  It’s nowhere near as good as the real thing in person, that’s a given, but it’s definitely helpful and at least it’s something.

The biggest issue involving dealing with the internet, however, tend to be those who claim to know what it’s like to experience cyber bullying, they claim to be against bullying, against harassment, against stalking, against making someone into a victim.  They decry abuse, unfortunately a lot of these very same people are more than willing to dish out the abuse they so claim to be against.

These kinds of people will claim to even be advocates of the disabled, but at a moment’s turn, they reveal themselves to be a venomous snake that was doing nothing more than awaiting your trust so your guard will be down, and once that guard is down, BOOM they strike.

Granted not everyone is like that, not by a long shot, but online abuse has made me exceptionally weary of people who don’t share my disability.  If they’re not at least moderately hard of hearing, I tend to be exceptionally more cautious around them, even more so if they’re hearing.

I’m even leery of people that share my sexuality on account that they too will turn on you.  No community is perfect, not by a long shot, but it is a rather sad state of affairs when the disabled are abused.  Unfortunately the people that do the abuse, don’t tend to believe they’re doing any abuse.