Soon after finding out about our son Cooper’s profound hearing loss, I began thinking about how my husband and I could raise him to be proud of who he is and what makes him different.

Rather than look the other way, I wanted us and him to learn to embrace his hearing loss, to teach him that what sets him apart can be a strength rather than an obstacle. Raising your child to be comfortable with hearing loss will pave the way to their success. Even though he was only six weeks old when we got his diagnosis, we began implementing these ideas immediately so that they were second nature to us and him. Raising your child to be comfortable with hearing loss can happen with these easy tips.

Talk about it

This may seem obvious, but it’s worth stressing over and over. The way to normalize something is to make it part of daily life and every day conversation. Obviously Cooper will grow up knowing he is a little different than other kids. I think acknowledging this rather than looking the other way is a vital part of teaching him to be comfortable. The sooner he realizes that his hearing loss will not limit him, the sooner he can just accept it as part of what makes him who he is.