In the last few years, “Trunk or Treat” has become very popular. Instead of kids going door to door in a neighborhood, communities create a Halloween event in one place. Adults decorate their cars and kids trick or treat from car to car without needing to navigate a neighborhood.
If you have a hearing loss, however, Trunk or Treat can be as difficult as Trick or Treat. Hearing Like Me has some tips for Trunk or Treat with a hearing loss.
Why Trunk or Treat is Appealing
There are many reasons why Trunk or Treat is appealing to parents and children as a Halloween activity.
It’s considered safer when a closed community such as a school or place of worship runs this event and people are more likely to know each other.
The kids get to see their friends and show off their costumes.
There may be other crafts and games.
It’s safer and more convenient to take your kids to one place.
For those who live in a neighborhood where not many people participate in trick or treating, it’s a way to bring kids to a livelier destination.
It gives adults a chance to socialize.
It puts a fixed time on the event. You can arrive and leave at specific times.
If you are a deaf or hard of hearing parent, you are required to keep your eyes on your kid(s) while communicating with other parents and kids in the dark. If you have deaf or hard of hearing children, you need to ensure that they can communicate with you.
“If you are a deaf or hard of hearing parent, you are required to keep your eyes on your kid(s) while communicating with other parents and kids in the dark.”
Here are some tips to help ease the stress of Trunk or Treat with hearing loss, especially if it’s in the dark.
Keep a gentle flashlight with you. One that will not hurt anyone’s eyes if you shine it at them. Let others know that you are raising your flashlight so you can read their lips or see their hands/facial expressions. (You may need to request that others lower their mask when speaking to you if you’re at an appropriate distance and are comfortable with this accommodation.)
Use technology.Phonak Roger microphone systems are great for communicating. Or even use a speech-to-text app.
Use a treat to your advantage. Use flashlight ring lights for your kids. These are little flashlights that are given out as a treat for the kids and go on their fingers as rings. You can take one as an adult or have your kids use them as their own light to see other faces.
Glow in the dark. Use some bendy glow sticks in a pattern and have your kids wear them. You’ll be able to spot that pattern.
Engage the community. Talk to friends whom you know will be at the event in advance. Have them know you need an extra set of eyes on your kids. Communities are usually happy to help.
Volunteer. Once you know the people setting up the event, it’s easy to suggest better light placements.
Be an ally. If you are not deaf or hard of hearing, but know that some attendees might be, keep a flashlight at your car or a light source on, so others can see your face. If you are wearing a mask due to COVID guidelines, wear a clear mask, or keep a clear mask handy. This will make it easier for anyone stopping by.
I’m a Hard of Hearing mom, originally from Canada and living in Southern California. When I’m not running my brand and design studio, I share stories online about raising my two Hard of Hearing daughters and advocating for hearing loss awareness.
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