This movie was on last night on CBS. It was a Hallmark movie about a hearing man who married a deaf woman. They had a baby and he was born hearing but lost his hearing when he was 6, I think. The father decides to look into a Cochlear Implant. The deaf Mom, who has two deaf parents is totally against it. A lot has been said about the movie today on many websites and blogs. Here is my take on it:
I thought it accurately displayed how most of deaf culture feels about an implant. They do not know the facts and think their culture is being taken away by implants. They believe we are damaging our children when we implant them. That we are ashamed of them and are trying to fix them. I, for one, do not think Cormac is broken. I never tried to "fix" him because he is still deaf. Sure, he can hear me when he is wearing his processors, but he is still deaf. He has to work hard to learn language and speech. I believe 90% of deaf children are born to HEARING parents. What are hearing parents supposed to do? Not communicate with their child? Not offer them every oppotunity to be part of our family? Have him only be able to "talk" to deaf people, who by the way, we don't know. Am I supposed to submerge myself into the deaf community when I am not deaf?
I thought it did NOT accurately display the Cochlear Implant side of the story. I think the two women they showed with implants were both implanted late in life since they still had a deaf voice. I think they did not show one child who was implanted and is a success story. I think by not showing the other side it only continues to make the deaf community think Cochlear Implants are not successful. Hey, I am not saying all children who received implants have perfect speech. Heck, I don't even know if Cormac will yet. But he certainly seems on his way.
All in all in came down to the fact that this is a personal decision that needs agreement from everyone involved. I cannot imagine if Frank didn't think he should have an implant. But then again, Frank is not deaf so why would he feel that way.
For those that think parents who implants their children are monsters, I wonder if the same can't be said about those parents for NOT implanting their child and offering them every oppotunity this world has to offer.
Just today, Cormac said so many words I can't even believe it. We were walking through the zoo and he said "llama" and "peacock", well actually he said "blue peacock". And I am not the only one who understands him. Others with me who do not even know him can undertand him. People are amazed when they find out he is deaf. (yep, i said deaf, because he still is) At CVS today he named red, yellow, blue and purple for the cashier. She was amazed and didn't even know he had am implant. SHe just said she can't believe a kid who just turned two knew all his colors and could say them.
I could go on all night about Cormac's accomplishments. I could tell you countless stories of other children who are success stories with implants. They are fully mainstreamed in school, traveling abroad, speaking more than one language. The possibilities are endless for these children who were so fortunate to be born in a time of amazing technology. Yes, not all will be as successful but with the hard work these kids and parents put into it I think most will. I see it everyday with my own eyes. Not just with Cormac but with his classmates who also have implants and are successful users.
And the greatest of all???? Just about an hour ago, I put the boys to bed. And you know what I heard??? "wuv you, mama". And it was Cormac saying it. Makes it all worth it.