I am the kind of person that is quiet until I feel welcomed in a group of people, and even then, I still am relatively quiet until spoken to.
Important information to consider:
- I am deaf with cochlear implants. The cochlear implants are hidden beneath my long hair. I understand a person if the room is relatively quiet, the person speaks clearly, and if I understand the topic well enough to make guesses towards what the other person might say next.
- Background noise, like other members of the group chatting, exacerbate the difficulty of understanding one person.
I am thinking of a situation where more than three people are present, all are hearing, and all do not know sign language enough to be able to communicate with me directly using sign language.
When you say that you need time until you feel welcome, how long does that usually take?
For me personally, it does not take long. Feeling comfortable in a group can take one to three group meetings, and might even take only one, if the group is especially compatible. (Easy to understand, understanding people, we are respectful of each other, knowledgeable about whatever we talk about, and relatable to each other by experience, age, knowledge, etc.)
How do I make it known to the group that I need a little more patience to communicate with?