It can't be that hard to find a baby monitor for the deaf

So here's the deal.

I'm profoundly deaf. My husband is hearing, but his ears pretty much turn off at night too. How will we be able to hear the little one cry in the night? (I'm trying to prevent SOME mommy-guilt.)

We live in a small 1-bed, and the little one will be sleeping in the bedroom with us for some time. We're looking to side-car the crib so she'll be right next to me, and after she gets bigger, she'll be only a couple of feet away from the bed when we move the crib up against the wall. I know I won't hear her cry because of the frequencies involved. I can hear my dog barking because his volume and frequency is right in the range where I CAN hear without my hearing aid.

I want a baby monitor that I can attach to me that vibrates. Or put in the bed if the vibrating feature is large-enough. IT CAN'T BE THAT HARD.

But it is.

Ideally, the monitor should

  • distinguish between crying and, say, my husband's coughing (allergy season is in full effect, and so will cold season. Plus I can already kinda hear that in the night.)
  • It should hopefully not go off if the cats go about nocturnal playing.
  • Or when the dog barks (which is rarely during the night, and when he does, I get up to investigate because it does mean something)
  • Or when the sirens go by on our busy streets during the night. (Especially Friday and Saturday nights thanks to drunken idiots.)

This is why I'm not impressed with the Silent Call sound signaler--it seems to hear any and all sounds.

If this sounds like those user-specifications and user-stories that designers and programmers look at before designing a new product--it is.

There was one promising new product that wrapped around the baby's ankle to sense movements and such...BUT, they say it only works for babies 3-months and up. Plus they never wrote back to me when I asked if the vibrating alarm on the phone would keep vibrating until I turned it off (ie, to wake me up) , or if it vibrated only for a short time.

So much for that one.

So, we're looking at reverse engineering other sound monitors to talk at the right frequency for the Silent Call vibrating alerts--perhaps some sort of microphone hooked up to a microprocessor or an old phone that can then signal the device that will wake me up?

(By 'we', I mean 'entirely my husband' because he's a nerd).

Maybe the little one will be blessed with a powerful set of lungs and a voice of the right frequency for me.

Or maybe the cats will bite me and yank on my hair to say, "Shut this thing up." One cat already makes sure I don't miss my 5am alarm, even on the weekends, so maybe they can learn.

Or maybe we can train our dog to bark or lick my face or slap me with his schnauzery-paw like other schnauzers like to do, when the baby cries.

In any case, I have about 21 weeks to get this figured out.

Filed under: deaf, pregnancy

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