I’m going out this weekend with a woman who has no hearing. I’ve hung out with her before but that was always when I was with the girl I was dating, who is a close friend of hers and who knows some sign language. All my communication so far has been either via IM, email, and a few times stuff written or typed for each other in person. She has been deaf since early childhood, and most her friends say it takes a couple of weeks to start understanding her when she talks, and I seem to be slower to pick it up than most people.
So my main reason for posting this was to see if you could offer some suggestions. One thing I considered would be one of those things you sometimes see in the grocery store toy aisle where you write on a plastic sheet with a stylus, and can erase it by peeling back the sheet, but that seems kinda cheap and would look funny - is there anything like that available that might be bigger, and obviously made for adults? I no longer have a laptop, otherwise that might be my solution, though it might not be practical to carry a laptop to a hockey game, but also considered maybe some kind of handheld spell-checker or translator to type out messages in. Any suggestions?
Also, I was thinking about the differences in how she perceives the world due to missing a sense, and I started realizing a lot of things I like to do wouldn’t be very appealing to her. I like to go to movies, but that is not such a great date option with a non-hearing person, even if she can follow plot by reading lips (which I think she’s mentioned before she can do sometimes), it would be hard to communicate with her in the dark.
I will probably learn sign language if I continue to date her, but I’ve made attempts before and for some reason I can’t pick it up that easily, and I don’t really have time now.