This movie was about a couple of hearing parents that gave birth to a deaf baby boy named Thomas in 1988. At the age of one his mother started to suspect that something was wrong with him. They brought him to Boston for testing when they discovered that he was deaf. They were giving him options such as speech therapy and or hearing aids at the time. They wanted him to talk no matter what he sounded like. He spoke muffled because that’s how he heard the sounds.
His brother felt very sad that Thomas was deaf and when he first found out he cried for three days straight. Kids at school would make fun of his brother because he was deaf and this saddened him. In his early education, preschool, they had two approaches to choose from. One being to learn speech and sign and the other speaking only. They chose the speech only because they didn’t want him to prefer sign and just stop speaking.
They also thought that sign inhibits speaking. Thomas endured hours of speech therapy each day and even after two full years of it his speaking skills were still very poor.Thomas’s mother was very frustrated and was always the one to discipline him. Whereas it was different from his father, he just excluded himself from it all. Thomas had limited speech because he didn’t know the concept of reading and writing so he would act out his stories and thoughts. Until 1970’s sign was forbidden.
This movie really showed how many hearing parents of deaf children felt. What information was or wasn’t given to them along the way. How hard it was to make the decisions that they did. There is so much that you must decide for your child.A lot of the time the parents weren’t thinking about their child and how they would benefit from their initial decision to either teach and learn ASL or go down the long hard road of speech therapy day after day. When in the end they aren’t going to achieve more than a fourth grade education level when they graduate high school because of all the time taken away from their original studies.
This movie open my eyes a lot, even though it was some years ago, and thing are more different now, but I had no idea on how parents felt or what options they were given.Why they made the decision they did and seeing the outcome of how the child reacted to it once they were old enough to make their own decision and realize what was happening with them. Leaning that there is more people out there like me and they are communicating is such a way that nothing is confusing and you can actually express yourself. The emotions of the parents really made me wonder if that’s how a lot of hearing parents feel when they discover their baby is deaf.