Deaf 29-Year-Old Hears For First Time

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    Sep 30, 2011 7:22 PM GMT
    Watch this video.

    A 29-year-old woman named Sloan Churman who's been deaf since birth has a surgical hearing implant turned on for the first time; it's also the first time she's ever heard her own voice.

    It's one minute and 31 seconds of pure, spontaneous joy.

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    Sep 30, 2011 7:26 PM GMT
    I watched that this morning on www.wimp.com and got oddly emotional. It is funny how we take the simplest things for granted.
  • creature

    Posts: 5197

    Sep 30, 2011 7:28 PM GMT
    That was beautiful. We really do take a lot for granted and don't appreciate the privileges we were born with.
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    Sep 30, 2011 7:31 PM GMT
    This is the best thing I've ever seen online!!

    Thanks for the post FootballHawk!
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    Sep 30, 2011 7:38 PM GMT
    I love this! I also loved when a lil child got to hear his mothers voice for the first time!

    We take it for granted out own precious senses....
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    Sep 30, 2011 8:44 PM GMT
    Thanks for sharing, makes us appreciate what we have indeed. Best video I have seen in some times.
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    Sep 30, 2011 8:53 PM GMT
    This might be a dumb question, but how does she understand what that other woman says, if she'd never "heard" English before and when she asks if her voice is really loud, she's not reading her lips icon_question.gif
  • BCSwimmer

    Posts: 209

    Sep 30, 2011 8:56 PM GMT
    Very touching. My father is severly deaf and so I know how difficult communicating can be with someone who can't hear thoroughly.

    It's interesting to read about the empathy people feel seeing this. That is a beatiful thing too, that our souls are touched by the joy experienced by others.
  • BCSwimmer

    Posts: 209

    Sep 30, 2011 9:11 PM GMT
    Hypnotico saidThis might be a dumb question, but how does she understand what that other woman says, if she'd never "heard" English before and when she asks if her voice is really loud, she's not reading her lips icon_question.gif


    It is unclear whether her impairment is moderate, severe or profound. Even if she she was profoundly deaf she may have had hearing aids or implements that taught her to distinguish sounds by resonance or whatnot. Of course it depends on if the profound deafness was pre-lingual or post lingual.

    While the intro says she was deaf since birth she doesn't have the severity of speaking challenges that pre-lingual deafness brings so I doubt she was profoundly deaf since birth.
  • TheIStrat

    Posts: 777

    Sep 30, 2011 9:30 PM GMT
    Teary-eyed. What a wonderful video
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    Sep 30, 2011 9:32 PM GMT
    BCSwimmer said
    Hypnotico saidThis might be a dumb question, but how does she understand what that other woman says, if she'd never "heard" English before and when she asks if her voice is really loud, she's not reading her lips icon_question.gif


    It is unclear whether her impairment is moderate, severe or profound. Even if she she was profoundly deaf she may have had hearing aids or implements that taught her to distinguish sounds by resonance or whatnot. Of course it depends on if the profound deafness was pre-lingual or post lingual.

    While the intro says she was deaf since birth she doesn't have the severity of speaking challenges that pre-lingual deafness brings so I doubt she was profoundly deaf since birth.


    Thanksicon_smile.gif
  • rebelbeard

    Posts: 558

    Sep 30, 2011 9:34 PM GMT
    Thank you for posting that! It's those moments that make life the amazing thing that it is!
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    Sep 30, 2011 9:40 PM GMT
    I'm puzzled. How could she understand the audiologist, if she never heard sound before, totally deaf? Reading lips only? But her own voice is surprisingly articulate, and you can't do that without audible feedback to guide you. I've known a number of deaf and nearly-deaf people, and their speech is always very garbled and hard to understand, not unlike what you hear from some stroke victims.

    At the same time, regaining one of our senses is a very profound experience. As I turned 9, and began a new school year, my new teacher's policy was to seat us alphabetically, which happened to place me at the back of the classroom. Previous teachers had seated us by height, shortest to the front, which I was.

    This new teacher noted I was unable to read the blackboard from the back, and advised my parents to have my eyes checked. I didn't know anything was wrong, because this was the vision I always had, my Mother constantly scolding me for wanting to sit right in front of the TV on the carpet, worried about the theory that these new TVs could damage your eyes. I had nothing to compare my vision to, what I saw was what I assumed everyone saw, and never complained.

    A couple of months later I got my first pair of eyeglasses. And on the way home from the eye doctor's in the dark of that winter evening in Mom's car, Christmas lights were already lit on stores and homes. And I saw them clearly for the first time in my life, no longer indistinct blurs of color. And I cried & cried for joy, until we got home, it was all so beautiful & unexpected, a new world.

    And then I ran all around the house, looking at things I always knew, but really for the first time. And seeing the TV sharply. It was many days before I got over the novelty of seeing. In school I had to endure the "4-eyes" mockery of my classmates, the only one with glasses, but I didn't care. The miracle of seeing was worth it.

    But my Mother later told me my eyesight had been ruined by sitting too close to the TV, in defiance of her admonitions. She always did have a problem with cause & effect.

    So I kinda understand this a very little, though parts of this vid do make me dubious.
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    Sep 30, 2011 9:45 PM GMT
    Great video! Thanks for sharing! I'm going with what everyone else has said so far: WE TAKE SOO MUCH FOR GRANTED!
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    Sep 30, 2011 10:28 PM GMT
    Hypnotico saidThis might be a dumb question, but how does she understand what that other woman says, if she'd never "heard" English before and when she asks if her voice is really loud, she's not reading her lips icon_question.gif

    I wondered the same thing. And the fact that she's speaking and doesn't sound like someone who has been deaf their entire life. Her words and pronunciation sound pretty good.

    I'm not skeptical about the authenticity of the video, but I think the description is wrong. I think she's probably recently gone deaf and can now hear again.
  • wander2340

    Posts: 176

    Sep 30, 2011 10:43 PM GMT
    So completely awesome! Thank you for sharing!!!
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    Sep 30, 2011 11:14 PM GMT
    Global_Citizen said
    Hypnotico saidThis might be a dumb question, but how does she understand what that other woman says, if she'd never "heard" English before and when she asks if her voice is really loud, she's not reading her lips icon_question.gif

    I wondered the same thing. And the fact that she's speaking and doesn't sound like someone who has been deaf their entire life. Her words and pronunciation sound pretty good.

    I'm not skeptical about the authenticity of the video, but I think the description is wrong. I think she's probably recently gone deaf and can now hear again.


    Yeah, I wasn't so sure after watching. Congratulations to her though!
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    Sep 30, 2011 11:25 PM GMT
    You know what is ironic about this, other deaf people can be very discriminatory against people who get these cochlear implants. I read a whole set of articles about a kid who had one when he was younger. Then he was traveling with his mother and they were at a rest stop and a group of deaf kids came out of a bus. They were all in an uproar and came over signing at them telling the mother how disgusted they were.

    I dunno why you would not want to have something to better yourself if you can, I mean we wear glasses to see.
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    Sep 30, 2011 11:53 PM GMT
    They played a Radiohead song for her, and she said "O GOD, GET THIS THING OUT OF MY HEAD!!!!"
  • Buddha

    Posts: 1766

    Oct 01, 2011 12:10 AM GMT
    Art_Deco saidI'm puzzled. How could she understand the audiologist, if she never heard sound before, totally deaf? Reading lips only? But her own voice is surprisingly articulate, and you can't do that without audible feedback to guide you. I've known a number of deaf and nearly-deaf people, and their speech is always very garbled and hard to understand, not unlike what you hear from some stroke victims.


    This was actually the first thing I reacted to as well. I've met a couple of deaf people in my life and they have a very "particular" articulation, and hers is very "clean" (I didn't know how to say that without sounding like an insensitive douche).
  • Tyinstl

    Posts: 353

    Oct 01, 2011 12:25 AM GMT
    buddha_the_god said
    Art_Deco saidI'm puzzled. How could she understand the audiologist, if she never heard sound before, totally deaf? Reading lips only? But her own voice is surprisingly articulate, and you can't do that without audible feedback to guide you. I've known a number of deaf and nearly-deaf people, and their speech is always very garbled and hard to understand, not unlike what you hear from some stroke victims.


    This was actually the first thing I reacted to as well. I've met a couple of deaf people in my life and they have a very "particular" articulation, and hers is very "clean" (I didn't know how to say that without sounding like an insensitive douche).


    She probably lost her hearing when she was younger. The fact that she can even understand spoken english indicates this.
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    Oct 01, 2011 12:33 AM GMT
    That's amazing. Truly.
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    Oct 01, 2011 12:36 AM GMT
    joe122 said
    Hypnotico saidThis might be a dumb question, but how does she understand what that other woman says, if she'd never "heard" English before and when she asks if her voice is really loud, she's not reading her lips icon_question.gif

    My thoughts exactly and she doesn't even sound like she had a hearing loss the way most hearing impaired people sound (See Marlee Matlin).
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sdhXmLtBLQY
    My guess is that she wasn't completely deaf, but had a moderate hearing loss. Either that or she had hearing when she was young, but lost it over time as someone else mentioned.
  • jonnyangel

    Posts: 77

    Oct 01, 2011 12:48 AM GMT
    I am so happy for her.That made my day!
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    Oct 01, 2011 12:48 AM GMT
    joe122 said
    joe122 said
    Hypnotico saidThis might be a dumb question, but how does she understand what that other woman says, if she'd never "heard" English before and when she asks if her voice is really loud, she's not reading her lips icon_question.gif

    My thoughts exactly and she doesn't even sound like she had a hearing loss the way most hearing impaired people sound (See Marlee Matlin).
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sdhXmLtBLQY
    My guess is that she wasn't completely deaf, but had a moderate hearing loss. Either that or she had hearing when she was young, but lost it over time as someone else mentioned.


    The title says "hearing my voice for the 1st time"
    and then the article reads she has been deaf since birth.. what ever happened to language comprehension? icon_idea.gif