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Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Unwelcomed Entry


We have a note on our door for the postal service or other delivery people that I don't hear the doorbell and to simply leave the item. It is quite clear.

The office and maintenance crew where we live also know that I am deaf. They often leave flyers when they have to come around to change filters etc. My husband had arranged it so that they would call him first, then he would text me and let me know what time they will be here. At least, that was how it used to work.

Recently, however, it didn't happen that way. When I woke up from my nap, the hall lights were on. I didn't turn them on. The door to the garage was unlocked. I locked it behind me when I came in from taking our son to school. I opened the front door and found one of the maintenance crew standing outside the apartment across from us. He turned and said, "We've already been over."

He had come into the house with the exterminator while I was home..alone..and asleep.

I closed the door and came upstairs to text Fabulous Husband. I was furious, and creeped out. I'm still feeling that way.

Hearing people have the advantage of not only hearing someone knocking or ringing the doorbell, but also doors opening and closing. Those of us with hearing loss or deafness don't have this capability. We are vulnerable. I no longer feel safe or comfortable in my home. My sacred space has been invaded, and it's going to take me some time to feel safe again.

Has anything like this happened to you? Did you end up moving, or staying?


14 comments:

  1. This has not happened to me, but if I'd been in that situation, I would have totally felt the same as you. I hope this does not happen again to you. We should feel safe in our homes.

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    1. I agree, Liz, we should feel safe in our homes.

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  2. Nothing like this has ever happened to me, but I would feel so violated. I would have my spouse give the rental facility a stern talking to about deafness and maybe contact the ADA and see if anything can be done?

    I am sorry this had to happen to you, home is one place we should feel the most safe.

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    1. Thanks, Kym,

      I'm actually ready to move. After I posted this, I went and ran errands. When I opened the front door, there was a notice they are coming Thursday to change filters. I had Fabulous Husband call the office... again ... to make arrangements. Fabulous Husband also bought me a chain lock. I will feel so much better after I get it installed.

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  3. I don't blame you for being upset and creeped out. This is the exact reason why I have a 95 pound yellow lab. He's very friendly, but he barks - thus, people do not dare to come in! You might consider obtaining a medium to large sized dog, to obtain a sense of protection. My pup has been a huge help for me.

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    1. You are so fortunate to have your pup!

      I have bee on a waiting list for a Hearing Service Dog from Susquahanna Service dogs for two years. I'm not sure how much longer I have to wait, but I will be very relieved when my turn comes up.

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    2. My pup isn't a Hearing Service Dog. He was just a little 9 week old guy I picked up, that I was so fortunate, to seem to know I am Deaf. He comes to me when someone is at the door - after he barks up a storm, smile. He does a lot of things for me - but he isn't a certified service dog, so I am very lucky. If you cannot wait for a service dog, you might want to look into obtaining a "regular" dog. They are quite intelligent and will adapt accordingly. I know I am beyond pleased with my guy.

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  4. Wow. So scary. I am sorry to hear that. I am glad you are ok. I guess I would demand that in the future,they do call/text your husband first and then text you before entry.I guess perhaps a permission to enter reply to them would be needed. I thought you had a Hearing Dog,too?Did he not bark/come get you? You could post a big note in the entry of your house: WAIT.. Did I let you in:) As a hearing person,I can't relate,but I can relate to the fear and uncomfortable feeling you have feeling violated. Over time,I do hope it subsides.

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    1. Hi, Allison,

      They were supposed call Fabulous Husband first. It's how we've done this before. A different person came this time, but this should be in our paperwork. I'm still on the waiting list for my Hearing Service Dog, and when he/she comes, I will make sure they don't try to do the "pet fee". You don't charge disabled people fees for wheel chairs, so they aren't supposed to charge extra for the certified working dog, either.

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  5. My goodness!! How creepy! So sorry this happened to you. They obviously don't care. Get chains and bolts for your doors, that should keep them out and send a message.

    Do you have flashing lights or some visual alert system for deaf/hh? Maybe this would be helpful.

    I would also find out if this is normal for them to enter your home without your knowledge. Do they enter people's homes when they think they are not home, when they need to fix or work on something? Don't they need permission?

    Again I am sorry this happened to you.

    In addition, this would be a good story for the local newspaper. I am sure a lot of people can relate. I definitely think there needs to be some awareness about this issue.

    (e

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    1. Thank you, (e. Fabulous Husband picked up the chain lock today. We're making sure this doesn't happen again.

      They left a notice that they were going to come that day, but they are supposed to call Fabulous Husband to let me know WHEN they are coming..they are't supposed to come in. They know I'm usually home and can't hear the door.

      I don't have a light. I dont' notice those. If I'm not looking in the direction, I'm not going to see the light flash for the door. :-)

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  6. Can you request to put a lock on your door that only you have the keys to, or a chain on the door so they just can't come in on their own? I would see if you can do one of those. I'm so sorry this happened!
    Danielle

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    1. Hi, Danielle,

      Fabulous Husband got a chain to put on the door. :-)

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    2. I'm so glad. That will make all the difference knowing someing can't just walk in! By the way I'm the Signing Time Academy instructor from Oregon but now live in MD.

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