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    Updated on Sep 27, 2020. Posted on Sep 23, 2020

    If You're Not Aware Of How The Pandemic Is Affecting Deaf People, You Need To Watch These TikToks

    "Masks have been a nightmare."

    Chrissy Marshall, a 20-year-old film major at the University of Southern California, was born severely hard of hearing. "I gradually lost my hearing until I was profoundly deaf around the summer of my senior year of high school," she told BuzzFeed.

    Growing up, she had hearing aids and always requested accommodations. She now relies on American Sign Language as a main form of communication and uses TikTok to teach people about ASL and the deaf community.

    @chrissycanthearyou

    Reply to @pierced.freak ASL for Penguin :) #signoftheday #fyp #deaf #ASL #learnontiktok #deafawarenessmonth #deafawareness

    ♬ original sound - Chrissy🌈🎬💜☂️

    The global pandemic has created a whole new set of challenges that Chrissy has taken to the platform to discuss. "Masks have been a nightmare," she said.

    "In public, I typically rely on social cues, spacial awareness, and reading lips, which are basically eliminated by the masks," she said. "I've had a lot of really rude encounters these last few months and very few people are patient enough to write or type with me. I handle my frustration by trying to just turn around, educate online, and carry a notepad wherever I go."

    @chrissycanthearyou

    Pandemics require patience 💜 #pandemic #deaf #asl #awareness #wholesome #educate #todaysyearsold #backyardboy

    ♬ Backyard Boy - Claire Rosinkranz

    In her video "a day in deaf shoes," she also details the struggles that come with virtual learning when you're deaf or hard of hearing — for example, having to focus on multiple things at once on your screen.

    @chrissycanthearyou

    a day in deaf shoes #foryou #fyp #deaf #asl #2020 #awareness #wholesome

    ♬ worldstar money (interlude) - Joji

    "I think it's important for people to know how to respectfully interact with anyone in the disability community and break down the intimidation barriers," she said. "Most people have never met a deaf person before. I want to help them know how to be accessible and respectfully patient when they do."

    Chrissy in a TikTok asking someone "What'd they say" and them replying "I'll tell you later."
    @chrissycanthearyou / Via tiktok.com

    While TikTok has its fair share of trolls and ableists, Chrissy said the majority of the feedback she receives is positive and supportive. "There are tons of people interested and fascinated by ASL, but don't have resources to learn from. I really love guiding them to get involved in the deaf community and learn ASL properly," she said.

    @chrissycanthearyou

    Reply to @anxiousbirdie 💖 #deaf #asl #signoftheday #deafawarenessmonth #wholesome

    ♬ original sound - Chrissy🌈🎬💜☂️

    If you want to learn some ASL and become more accessible, follow @chrissycanthearyou on TikTok!

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