I’ve Been Deaf and Mute Since Birth
When I was old enough, I was forced to marry the head of our region.
Editing by Twila Bird
Photography by Lindsay Silsby
I’ve been deaf and mute since birth. When I was old enough, I was forced to marry the head of our region. My parents were too old to protest; they ran away, and we have heard no news about them. I escaped with my brother, and now we are in Europe. I only want to live in a country that is peaceful and [where] there is no threat.
(Information supplied by Radwa’s brother, Ilhan )
Our team members obtain informed consent from each individual before an interview takes place. Consent forms are translated and explained in the individual’s primary language. Individuals dictate where their stories may be shared and what personal information they wish to keep private. In situations where the individual is at risk and/or wishes to remain anonymous, alias names are used and other identifying information is removed from interviews immediately after they are received by TSOS. We have also committed not to use refugee images or stories for fundraising purposes without explicit permission. Our top priority is to protect and honor the wishes of our interview subjects.