Archive for the 'Online Dating Experience' Category

Dec 29 2015

We’re bringing in new blog contributors for 2016!

Open Chat Night started August 2009 and has taken place each week on Wednesday nights in our hearing loss chat room.  I have written over 200 blog topics, which have spurred insightful and intriguing discussions and conversations over the years.  I have talked a lot about my personal experiences ranging from social anxiety, hearing loss, technology, and many other related topics regarding the hearing loss community.

As we approach a new year, I have decided to open our chat room to bring in blog contributors to share their experiences that can open up new discussions.  One of our staff writers, Hannah Mann, who is profoundly deaf and wears CI, has been writing up some blog posts and we have used some of these for our chat room discussions once a month since last fall.  We now have a team interested to participate in 2016 for writing blog topics.  Rather than writing my own—which seems repetitive as I’m running out of topics—I think it would be beneficial to allow other members to write topics for our chat onwards.

If you’re interested to write blog topics and share your experiences related to hearing loss, please let us know—we’ll be happy to add more members on our list of blog contributors!  Your posts can reach potentially 100+ visitors per month.

Join us at this week’s Open Chat Night and Happy New Year!

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Feb 25 2014

Hear Your Dreams

Published by under Online Dating Experience

A while back, we had an interesting conversation at Open Chat Night about how dreams relate to hearing loss.

Although I personally can’t remember any specific dreams about my hearing loss, one of our members mentioned one of hers in which she got into a pool without taking her hearing aids off.  I was just curious if anyone in the hearing loss community has something to share about their dreams.

We should all be able to hear sounds in our dreams without wearing hearing aids in them, since we already know the sounds from wearing hearing aids in real life.  However, if someone has been deaf throughout his or her entire life, that person wouldn’t know what “sound” sounds like.  So, how would he or she recreate it in a dream?

Hannah, a staff writer at DeafandHoH.com, is profoundly deaf.  She can’t hear speech or most environmental noises without hearing aids.  So, before she wore hearing aids or had a cochlear implant, she doesn’t remember having “heard” anything in her dreams, and her dreams tended to be mostly visual.  However, she’s been told told that she signs in her sleep.

I know deaf people can also sense vibrations in music without necessarily hearing the sounds.  I’m curious to know if that’s ever played a role in your dreams.

Share your interesting dreams or anything related to sound and hearing loss at this week’s Open Chat Night.  Let’s have fun talking about the inner thoughts and imagination of your dreams!

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Jun 18 2013

Deaf-Blindness

Published by under Online Dating Experience

Blog topic written by Hannah Mann, staff writer at DeafandHoH.com

I recently finished a week-long stint as a volunteer SSP (Support Service Provider) at a deaf-blind camp in Maryland.  Essentially, SSPs serve as a bridge between deaf-blind clients and their environment, often through tangible means, such as tactile sign language or physical guidance.

The campers themselves exhibited a wide range of visual and hearing ability with some who were partially blind and completely deaf; some who were partially deaf and completely blind campers; and some who could hear or see nothing.  My particular camper fell in the first category—he could only see high-contrast images at a few inches away from his face—and we primarily used tactile sign language.  Needless to say, the lack of vision entailed some creative adaptations on each SSP’s part—often in ways that we didn’t quite expect.  For instance, because he couldn’t see my face or body language, I constantly had to think of other ways to convey emotion or facial expressions (an essential component of American Sign Language).

Nevertheless, I found the experience extremely rewarding, even as I struggled with my own fears of becoming deaf-blind.  These campers, in a very real way, made their own fun and happiness.  They were probably among the least self-conscious people I’ve ever met, and their genuineness quickly endeared them to us SSPs.

I’d love to hear about your experiences with deaf-blind people, or with being deaf-blind yourself.  Do you have any experience with SSPs, tactile/protactile signing, close-range voicing, Braille, or other accommodations for the deaf-blind?  How do you feel about deaf-blindness—does it scare you, or is it just another adaptation?  Tell us all about it at this Wednesday’s Open Chat Night!

You can also post in the forum under Deaf-Blindness.

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Jun 25 2008

The end of online dating

Published by under Online Dating Experience

My 3-month subscription with eHarmony has ended.  They have automatically renewed my subscription for another month and charged my credit card without prior notification.  I couldn’t find any phone number on their site.  I sent an email to customer support and finally got a number to call.  Fortunately, they were kind enough to give me the refund.  The person over the phone asked, “Why are you leaving eHarmony.”  I told them nobody was responding or contacting me.  The person did not give any advice, suggestions, or encouragement to continue using their service.  So, that was the end of it for me.  Their tagline is “We look forward to helping you find the love of your life.”  They certainly did not give me any help with the money I spent.

It is very questionable how accurate the matching system works in eHarmony?  I have answered all the questions honestly.  I have received one contact for open communication in the first set of seven matches sent to me.  Afterwards, I didn’t get any contacts by receiving over 200 matches during the 3 month period.  For the people I showed interest, they wouldn’t respond.  Many of the matches I got did not view my profile.  What is the point of meeting people if they aren’t online?  I’ve also seen few profiles posting very little information and pictures that look fake… possibly a scanned model picture from a magazine.  I seen many profiles without a picture.  I don’t want to visualize my match like a character in a novel.  Lastly, they added features such as sending icebreakers similar to other dating sites.  These are sending pre-written messages to paid and non-paid members such as “Just wanted to say hi.”  As I seen in their advertisements, eHarmony make them sound very different than other dating sites and why they charge more.  For me, it was no different.  It was just a waste of time and energy answering all the questions honestly and thinking I will meet some people.  I’ve heard success stories about people finding that special someone in eHarmony but that could be one out of a million, who knows?  I don’t have any real answers other than my personal experiences.

I decided to end my online dating adventure.  I haven’t had much success using dating sites that includes Match.com, Singlesnet.com, Plentyoffish.com, and Shaadi.com.  Honestly, I have met few people but the friendship did not last.  These sites seem to deliver the same results.  I come across many fake profiles.  I wouldn’t know if I am contacting paid members because many of them can post free profiles.  So, I won’t get their emails or reply if they aren’t paid members.  I contacted hundreds of people and many of them won’t respond.  How embarrassing is that!  I don’t know the real reasons behind this.   Do any of these people actually exist?  I taken dating advices for putting the right words in my profile, sending messages, and posting pictures.  Still, I did not have any luck.

I am very frustrated trying to meet people online that has been happening for 2 years now.  I just want to meet new people and have a friend to hang out with.  Why does it have to be so difficult to make it happen?   I would like to hear from anyone who has been through this online dating experience.  Please share your stories and I’ll post them here.

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May 30 2008

Hello! How’s it going? – My First Response.

Published by under Online Dating Experience

During the spring of 2006, I got a little taste of what is to come in the online dating world. I subscribed to Match.com dating service for several months, and I only found one person interested in me. This was my first experience meeting someone online. I wasn’t receiving any responses from people who posted pictures in their profiles. I was dismayed to learn that all of my matches won’t respond to my emails. So, I decided to contact a few people who did not post a picture, and maybe something good will come out of it.

I finally got one response. It was after I wrote a different type of email, something that stands out and doesn’t sound generic. In the profile, this girl wrote something like “I am looking for someone who is not afraid to speak their mind”, and I responded to this in the email saying that itself depicts her true personality. I got a short reply from her saying “Hello! How’s it going?”. Her name was Amy. I didn’t think this was a good response to start a conversation but it’s better than having no new messages. So, I started the conversation saying how nice the weather was, and that I have been bike riding. The real test was whether I going to get another reply from Amy? I’ve had experiences when people don’t reply to my second email and disappear. I don’t have any real answers to why is that… but maybe these girls aren’t interested or serious about meeting someone. I guess there could be millions of reasons and I’ll never know it.

Amy did reply to my second email, and I passed the test! So, that means I got myself into the second stage of the communication process. She was actually interested in talking with me.

She is interested in deer hunting

I have never been interested in anything remotely to hunting. Well, I found out Amy likes to go deer hunting with her father. I learned this is one interest we don’t have in common. I did not want to rule her out because of that, and possibly I would be missing out on a very nice girl. So I didn’t talk much about deer hunting at my end of the conversation. However, the good news was she loves to travel. and that was one of the things I like to do. It was nice to know we have some similar interests to talk about.

Saying goodbye to Match.com

After we exchanged a few emails through the Website, I was ready to ask for her personal email address so we can talk outside of Match.com. I considered this as the third stage in the communication process.  Actually, it was during this time that my subscription came to an end, and I told her that I’ll need her home email address to continue talking. As I anxiously awaited her reply for about a day, she sent me her email address. Whew, I was happy and fortunate to come this far and have at least one friend at the end of my subscription. I guess my money wasn’t entirely wasted.

The missing picture

For a couple weeks, our emails got more interesting and I was learning more about her. I started to like Amy but there was one big piece in the puzzle missing. I still haven’t seen her picture, and that is very important to see whether there is chemistry. I don’t intend to judge her entirely based on looks. I believe there has to be some sort of connection. For example, I may look at one girl thinking she is very pretty and another guy won’t be attracted to her. I think people perceive looks differently in their own way.

I decided it was time to ask her for a picture because she had already seen mine. Amy responded with this answer… “As for the picture, I don’t know how to put a picture on the computer. I can describe myself if you’d like.” There was something peculiar about that, and Amy told me she has been doing online dating for couple years now. So, I would think she knows how and other guys must have asked for her picture. Also, everyone has digital cameras and how hard would it be to attach a picture on the computer! Anyway, I told her to describe herself but that didn’t give me many answers as to how she looks. It was like trying to visualize a character in a novel.

The road to Starbucks

I don’t know what she was trying to hide by not showing her picture. The conversations between us were getting more interesting, and she was starting to ask me more questions than before. So, I decided it was time to make the next move for us to meet in person. I was kind of scared thinking about it because it’s almost like a blind date. I guess that is what to expect when you’re meeting someone online and not seeing their picture. Oh well, I had come this far and I have nothing to lose.

Amy mentioned she liked drinking coffee a lot. I asked her if she was interested in meeting at Starbucks.  I also told her that I don’t drink coffee much but I like cappuccino. She did show interest in meeting but it did not work out smoothly. I looked at my saved emails so I decided to share the actual conversations from my experience trying to meet someone for the very first time…

My reply:
I’m excited about meeting you. I remember you mentioning that you and your mom went shopping at Brookfield Square, so I’m thinking that we could meet at Starbucks across from V Richards plaza on Sunday at 11 am…

Amy wrote:
I work this weekend both Saturday and Sunday so that isn’t a good time to meet. I’m not sure what Starbucks you are talking about either. I’ll take a raincheck though. We can plan to meet on a different day and time…

My reply:
When is the next time you have the weekend off, or would you prefer to meet on a weeknight? I’ll look for a Starbucks closer to you and let you know in my next reply…

Amy wrote:
I will be turkey hunting May 10 through the 14 and the weekend of the 20 and 21 I’ll be busy also. A weeknight would be alright. Maybe the week of the 15 – 19. We could meet at the Starbucks by Brookfield Square. I’m sure I’ll be able to find it. I do live in the Falls and I know exactly where the Starbucks is. Anyway, let me know…

My reply:
I was thinking we could meet on Friday, May 19 at 7pm. Do you have any plans at that time? Sure, we can go to Starbucks near Brookfield Square…

Amy wrote:
That Friday isn’t good for me. We can meet at that Starbucks on a weeknight if that works for you. Let me know…

My reply:
No problem, we can meet on a weeknight. What day and time will work best for you next week? I usually get out of work around 6pm. I should be free anytime at 7pm or later…

Amy wrote:
A weeknight is good. I’ll let you know what night by Sunday night.

Amy wrote after Sunday night:
What day is good for you to meet?…

My reply:
I was thinking we could meet on Wednesday at 7pm. Will you be free at that time?…

Amy wrote:
I’m sorry but Wednesday isn’t good for me. I have to go stay by my dad’s house because they are going to Tennessee until Sunday. If you don’t mind we could meet Sunday sometime…

My reply:
I don’t have any plans on Sunday afternoon. What do you think about 3:00?

Amy wote:
Sunday afternoon at 3:00 at the Starbucks by Brookfield Square right?

As you can see with all these emails, I started to get very frustrated. I just wanted to meet with her and get this over with. Unfortunately, Saturday morning, on the day before we planned to meet, Amy cancelled it.  She apologized and told me she recently met someone and would like to see where that goes.

I sent her another nice email but she never got back to me again. She wasn’t even interested to be just friends and stay in touch. About a year later, I was browsing through Match.com, and I saw her profile without a picture posted. She has been online so I don’t know if she really did meet someone, and what really happened.

Well, this is one of my stories I wanted to share about my online dating experience.

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