I am reading a very good book called Missed Connections: Hard of Hearing in a Hearing World by Barbara Stenross. It contains several personal accounts told by members of a support group for people with deafness. I highly recommend this book, especially to those who consider themselves hard of hearing.
Here is an excerpt from the book that talks about the difficulties of not fitting in both the hearing and deaf worlds (pages 23-24):
In high school, Karen rarely participated in clubs or went to large gatherings. "Mostly, I think I was alone," she told me when I talked to her in her parents' living room. "I mean, I was very alone. I didn't talk much in class. I didn't raise my hand in class. Most of my friendships were one-on-one. . . .I never went to any of the parties or social functions. . . ."
[On switching to a residential school for the deaf]
"I had a hard time learning signs," Karen began. "Well, not so much a hard time, it was just---it was for them to accept me. It took me almost to the end of that year to be accepted by Deaf students. . . .I took my hearing aids off one day in class and the teacher said, 'Karen, you put those hearing aids back on!' (Laugh.) I said, 'Well, I was seeing how it was to be like the other kids for a change."
I find myself nodding in agreement. It is nice to know that I am not alone. For a long time, I thought I was the only one who seemed to have trouble fitting in anywhere, especially during high school. I never thought it had anything to do with my deafness. I thought I was just a weirdo who did not know how to socialize normally. But, I feel the same way when I am with a group of signing deaf people. For the most part, I am able to follow along and participate in the discussions, but I never feel like I truly belong. I suppose the only time I truly feel like I belong (outside my good friends and family) is when I am with other people like me; in between.