UNITED STATES—Many people take for granted their ability to fully utilize all five of their senses. You might be surprised to hear that some people aren’t fully aware of what those senses are. For a reminder for those not in the know they are: touch, smell, taste, hear and sight.

I don’t know a ton of people without the inability to see, but I have encountered plenty in my lifetime. I do however, know quite a few individuals who don’t have the ability to hear and to hear some of the things they encounter just in their daily lives troubles me.

I feel like when someone has a disability people automatically label them, and it’s not fair. Not being able to see or hear is not a disability, it’s a disadvantage. An individual doesn’t have a sense that so many of us take for granted and have to function in a world where not everyone takes that loss into consideration.

I know so many deaf individuals who can accomplish things that hearing people have trouble doing, but never receive the accolades that they deserve. They’re human beings just like all the rest of us. We should not look at them like they’re incapable of doing things. Yes, there are certain things that may prove to be a bit difficult to accomplish, but it’s not impossible. For starters, I do work with individuals who are deaf and on occasion I help with making phone calls they are unable to make when an interpreter is not around.

It tears my heart when I call companies and make it clear that I’m calling on behalf of an individual who is unable to speak they don’t take the call seriously in my opinion. Quite honestly, it infuriates me at times; these people are human beings just like everyone else; you don’t have a right to push them to the side because you’re not privy of how to handle a situation involving a deaf individual or the best way to assist the individual.

Yes, corporate America, I’m talking about you, more specifically the level of customer service that comes along with most companies. The Cable company, telephone, electric, gas, the list can go on and on. I almost feel as if some of these services do their best to frustrate individuals who might be deaf and those who are calling on their behalf to get an issue resolved. I see the problem so much more when it comes to attempting to terminate service. So many companies want to give deaf individuals the run-in around; its simple people, your service or product is no longer wanted!

I find it beyond frustrating when they ask me the question, “Why is the person listed on the account not able to call us?” Hello, the individual is deaf that is why they are unable to call and speak to you directly. I think if they could they would and would have no problem doing so.

Just because a person is deaf does not mean they have no voice. They have a voice; it’s just everyday Americans can’t hear it. I always go back to that saying that I learned as a kid. “Just because you don’t say anything, doesn’t mean you don’t have anything to say.” Think about that for a second people, it’s quite the powerful statement to say the least. There are so many members in the deaf community who have accomplished and are still doing amazing things in this country. I mean look at Nyle DiMarco who is currently killing it on the ABC reality-competition series “Dancing With the Stars.” He might not be able to hear the music, but his partner is utilizing touch as a way of helping her partner master the dance moves and pick-up on the musicality. The celeb is just proof of that, the loss of a sense does not prevent someone from accomplishing something that others might deem impossible. The deaf community is just as imperative as all other various individuals that encompass this place that we call America.

The next time you run into or come across a deaf individual perhaps think twice about that sense that you have that they don’t have. Imagine living in the world they live in? As Americans, we take so many things for granted, but maybe just maybe for once if we placed ourselves in the shoes of so many others we wouldn’t be so quick to do that.