Caitlin B. was diagnosed with hearing loss when she was 2 years old. Twenty-five years later, she reflects on how much she has accomplished already with her cochlear implant and what’s to come: 

Caitlin is now an adult with a cochlear implant Caitlin grows up with cochlear implant“Very often I am asked if I am from another country. No one ever suspects I am deaf; they just think I have an accent.

When I tell them I have a cochlear implant, people are just blown away at how well I do with it.

I am 27 years old.

I am employed as a Quality Analyst.

I am happily married to my husband, Shorya.

I have many goals for my future: travel the world, have a family, build a house and build a great life with my family.

My parents were concerned if any of this would be possible for me when I was diagnosed with profound hearing loss when I was 2 years old.

Upon learning my hearing loss diagnosis, I was immediately enrolled in DePaul School for Hearing and Speech, and I was fitted with hearing aids. DePaul teaches Listening and Spoken Language (LSL) to children who are deaf or hard of hearing. This is what my parents wanted for me, and I’m so grateful for their decision.

Caitlin, who grew up with a cochlear implant, talks about her accomplishmentsWhen I was four years old, I had cochlear implant surgery and the greater hearing world opened up for me.

I continued at DePaul School for eight years where I was given intense auditory and oral training. I was then mainstreamed into a public middle school in seventh grade. I made many friends and had all the same experiences that middle school kids have.

In high school, I joined marching band and was on the flags team. I participated in high school plays and went to the homecoming dances and proms. I was also involved with my church mission trips where I got to travel the country and help the less fortunate.

Then I attended La Roche College, majoring in Sociology with a minor in Marketing. I was very active in college, too. I worked in the cafeteria as a cashier, so I got to know everyone. I was a social butterfly. During my four and a half years in college, I was involved in many things and had all the fun college kids do. My favorite part was study abroad where I got the travel to Italy, Greece, Turkey and the United Kingdom.

Because of my cochlear implant, I thrive in the hearing world and look forward to what my future holds.”

If you have a child with hearing loss and are looking for information on cochlear implants, visit www.IWantYouToHear.com.

If you’re an adult with hearing loss and are interested to know if cochlear implants could help you, visit www.Cochlear.com/US/WakeUpCall.

Renee Oehlerking
Renee Oehlerking is the Public Relations Manager at Cochlear Americas where she is responsible for the region’s public relations and consumer marketing social media. Renee enjoys uncovering, telling and showcasing the inspiring stories of hearing implant recipients. As a recent transplant to Denver, Colorado, Renee enjoys exploring all that the state has to offer outdoors.