Sunday, March 18, 2007

No Close Bonding with my parents from the Deaf Oral School

Since I get no response from SJI for more than 1 1/2 years after I did contacted them after I did recived the letter from this link:

So now it is time for me to share my experience that I couldn't find my close bonding with my parents by communicating with a language after my father got a new job in Chicago. At my first school year as 3 1/2 years old dorm student in SJI , I had no one helping comb or brush my hair. My hair got tangled up and mess up without anybody help brushing my hair for about a week. One of the SJI nuns who was an House Parent of the dorm did noticed my messy hair and she pulled me in front of a mirror. She used brush and sisscor to cut my hair and she used a brush hit on my head so hard!

Then the SJI nun cut my hair off without asking my mom's permission!

I cried so hard and I did remembered other older dorm girls did watched me on the mirror and trying not to laugh so hard because they were so jealous of me as a new young dorm students!

Of course the SJI nun did forced me to clean up the mess from my hair off the floor while the older dorm students did enjoyed watching me crying so hard because my head was hurting from the nun brushing so hard and pulling my hair. And when I fly back home at O'Hare Airport, my mom was shocked to see my hair! She got mad at me and I cannot find my own language to communicate with her!!

Thanks for allowing me to speak out as I support ASL for close bonding needs!!


mishkazena said...

That is so sad. Only if parents knew the extent of abuses deaf children experienced in residential schools. More victims need to share with the world how they were treated, instead of being ashamed and hiding. They have done nothing wrong except being children who needed help, but received abuse instead. Thank you for sharing your experience.

Mikey said...

Wow... powerful drawings...
I feel for you. Wow.
This is truly a traumatic experience for you.

Anonymous said...

The art of the cruel school experience just made my stomach turn. I can feel the pain. No child should go through this. This is abusive. You are very courageous for sharing this story. We need to get the truth out there about how deaf children are hurting in systems like the one you endured. Sharing your experience is your steps towards healing and taking back your life. Thank you for the powerful story to remind us that we have a lot of work to do. Your story is a gift. Bless your heart.

Julie Rems-Smario

Anonymous said...

Seems that more and more former students are going forward to report about their past at their schools. I want the world to know how much we suffered at our schools. SUE the school and nuns or faculties who abused deaf students! We cannot let them go unjustice.

Anonymous said...

Wow.. Thats very mean of them to do that to you!

Candace A McCullough said...

This kind of story makes me so mad. You didnt deserve to be treated like you were. Your artwork is beautiful and powerful.

Anonymous said...

Save all your art work! We heard you through your drawings. Yes, there are many, many horrible stories about dormitory life. I think more Deaf people should speak out about their experience in dormitory life. When I went to Maryland School for the Deaf, none of the dormitory personnel had college education, and they were very abusive.

Anonymous said...

the water paint art you have there is very POWERFUL expression! I know how you went through at oral school. You should have written the book in the base of your experience!

We are now working on "bullying" at school for the deaf. We push all teachers, staff, houseparents to focus on bully kids on weaking kids. We try to make them happier at the school and get a good education they deserve!

Kelly said...

Wow, it was awful for what you had gone through as a child. Indeed, you didn't deserve it! At least, I am glad you have wonderful family with loving husband and two adorable boys.

Deaf Niches said...

Wince... I have some friends who went to SJI (I am a CID graduate and the houseparents were a lot better than SJI's nuns.) Carl is right, you should save the artwork, as part of history of deaf residential schools, to show what deaf children experienced in 1970's.

What is funny... my mother saw one nun for "counselling"... and she dragged me along and that nun (I don't remember the name... she had a short blonde hair.) I was mainstreamed at University City High School at that time, in late 1970's, and that nun told me that everything was my fault and I was like huh and then I told that to my father and he forbade that I saw her again. Oh my mom and I had a falling out and I moved in with my father. That was the first and last time I touched SJI campus, off of Olive Road, I think... I don't remember, but it was close to McDonalds, as I remember...

Oh boy about your haircut. That was a sure way to crush your spirit.

You are a survivor.

Anonymous said...

Wow, this is so sad to see the abuse you and many others have gone through. I really feel for you. Thank you for sharing your artwork with us. You're very talented. The pictures tell your story very clearly. I hope sharing has been therapeutic for you.

Anonymous said...

Wow, this is so sad to see the abuse you and many others have gone through. You're very talented in your artwork. The pictures tell your story very clearly. I hope it has been therapuetic for you to share your story. Thank you. Like the others say, you are a survivor!

David said...

I feel your pain. That degraded you horribly and even worse you were punished for having your hair cut such as students laughed at you and your mother got mad at you.

Please please save your drawings and I hope in one day, USA will have its own Deaf Culture Centre that may have yours. Canada has its own Deaf Culture Centre which is in Toronto. I went there and there are so many Deaf Canadian collections.

David Kerr

Brian said...

What a tragic story, I'm sorry to hear it happened to you. I echo Candace's words - you didn't deserve such cruel treatment. As Julie said, it shows how much more work has yet to be done before deaf children receive humane treatment from school staff.

A coincidence - just this morning I heard horror stories from at least half a dozen high school students who experienced abuse at the hands of their former elementary school teacher. Just as they found a safe place to share about the trauma they experienced, your blog gives you a safe place to share with the community. Your artworks are direct and deeply evocative.

-Brian Berlinski
Deaf Art Therapist

ASL Risen said...

Thanks Brian!

When I was at SJI, we the Deaf oral kids had to take 45 minutes per week of art. I felt so sorry for the Art teacher because she cannot managed us, the oral deaf kids who need to feel free from the very cruel oral educator's class from Mondays to Fridays!

I got no interpreter in art class at hearing high school and hearing college! Sad!

I need to keep up with my artworks but I need to find my own time with paintings and drawings to get away from my pressures at work.