(Closed) Deaf and hearing impaired guests

posted 3 years ago in Guests
Post # 2
Member
5944 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: May 2014

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mictomac :  You could also possibly find someone who does CART – Communication Access Realtime Translation. That would solve the problem of people who don’t know ASL. I can’t imagine it would be cheap, though…

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Post # 3
Member
7179 posts
Busy Beekeeper
  • Wedding: September 2012

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mictomac :  My first reaction was definitely an ASL interpreter, but I guess if most of them don’t know sign language that could be a waste. What does your fiance have to say about it?

Post # 4
Member
251 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: October 2018

It’s SO crazy you posted this, I had been brainstorming about this just the other day! I have a lot of deaf relatives on my side of the family. I was thinking about having a family member interpret, which is quite the norm in my family for weddings and gatherings. I believe my mom was the one to interpret her brother’s wedding actually (it’s their parents and extended family who are deaf.) I thought about asking my aunt who I’m really close to, I think she would actually be excited and feel more included in the wedding. Is there anyone in his family that could interpret for you? Maybe a family friend? Otherwise you can look into hiring someone. I wouldn’t worry about guest feeling like you’re making a fuss over them. If they’re anything like my family they would probably be excited you thought about them and made your day more enjoyable for them! I think your idea of the special programs is nice too 🙂

Post # 5
Member
251 posts
Helper bee

My Future Mother-In-Law is deaf and we are signing our vows as we say them. It’s our way to make her feel included and my Fiance is fluent in ASL but I’m not that great so she will be over the moon. 

Post # 6
Member
124 posts
Blushing bee

You could always ask your fiance what is the best solution for him. If all or most of them know asl, hire an interpreter even though they can lip read. From research only 40% of sound can be lip read so basically deaf and hard of hearing people are filling in the rest that they have missed. It is not an easy task to continually lip read especially at big social event like a wedding. 

I’m hard of hearing and I have deaf family members as well. I’m hiring an asl interpreter for me because I don’t want to missed half of my own ceremony or speeches.

Edit: I forgot to add that I went to many weddings as a guest, family reunion, wedding anniversaries, church, wakes/memorial/burial/funeral and I never heared or understood speeches. It unfortunate because people think I understood all of it since I can lip read and talk to them face to face. 

Post # 7
Member
253 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: August 2018

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mictomac :  I am hard of hearing (don’t know ASL/rely HEAVILY on lip reading) and can’t recall any wedding where I’ve heard the vows or any speeches not done with a microphone. My first thought is that an ASL interpreter might even come across as offensive if it isn’t that many family members actually sign. I REALLY like your idea of having written programs or something of that nature so that they can follow along…I would have loved that. It would also be nice to move them (may not be possible if there are a lot of individuals) closer to the front so that lip reading is an option. However, as a PP noted, that becomes very exhausting for extended periods of time.

Post # 8
Member
8940 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper

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mictomac :  It’s very considerate of you to think about this. Have you been to any weddings on his side of the family? Or has he? How do they accommodate? I would take cues from them. If neither of you have been to any weddings on his side, how about asking his parents or some other family members. As well-intentioned as you are, it might be better to get some input from his family rather than go to a lot of trouble and expense and end up with something that’s not really helpful. Or worse, something that’s inadvertantly embarassing or offensive. I would say, don’t reinvent the wheel. Ask his family how they ensure that everyone can enjoy the fesitivities.

Post # 9
Member
132 posts
Blushing bee

Do any of them(your Fiance included) use assisted listening devices/systems (ALD/ALS)? This can help filter out the background noise, but would be too costly for you to undertake yourself. If they already use something, that might help you make accommodations (speakers can wear mics that send that sound to the CI/HA) but it’s really tricky if you don’t know anything about how they deal with their HL. I guess first you need to find out how many guests sign, how many use CI/HA and if they use neckloops/etc. are you amplifying the speeches/vows at all? 

Post # 11
Member
251 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: October 2018

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mictomac :  if most of them don’t sign ASL, they probably all have their own style that they all understand. Maybe someone who communicates with them a lot will know their style! I don’t think anyone in my family really uses ASL.

Post # 12
Member
1431 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: November 2016

Our wedding was interpreted (I am an interpreter and invited deaf guests). Try to find out as much as you can about their language preference. ASL interpreters can match a variety of sign language preferences (ASL, Signed English, PSE). 

Post # 13
Member
1431 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: November 2016

I should add my bridesmaid who is a certified interpreter was the one who interpreted the ceremony, not me. While family is nice, you want to make sure they have the skill to interpret and also be aware they will be busy with prep, etc. it’s still a duty to perform. 

Best of luck and wishing you a beautiful ceremony! 

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