Deaf people dating

There's nothing new about the Internet being a connection tool for geographically disconnected niches. But there’s something a little more important about these new services that are attracting thousands of single deaf people seeking companionship and love, experts say.“The Net just allows them a different way of communicating.” Estimates of the size of the deaf community vary wildly — both Haines and Marais say there are between 20 and 25 million people in the United States who face some kind of hearing loss.The number of people fluent in American Sign Language is much smaller, however, fewer than 1 million people nationwide, according to Robert Pollard, director of the Deaf Wellness Center at the University of Rochester.Haines said members of his site include the completely deaf, aging singles who are losing their hearing — even sign language interpreters who can hear but are looking for relationships with people immersed in deaf culture. But deaf-hearing relationships are apparently the exception rather than the rule, according to anecdotal evidence.

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Those who communicate with American Sign Language are quite literally using a different language, one that is as distinct from English as French.“I did look on those hoping to find deaf partners, but of course deafness is not one of the selection criteria I turned to the deaf dating sites.” Despite the challenges of using a larger dating site, many deaf folks are doing it anyway.“I’m doing it as a hobby,” Marais, a full-time computer security specialist, said.Deaf Match is the older of the two sites, but not by much; it launched in 2001.

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