No matter how uncomfortable some people are when they realize I can’t talk, there is one thing almost everyone does automatically that lets me know they care and they’re trying to help.
When someone new comes up and starts talking to me, the other person will fill in the blanks where I can’t. They’re eager to explain what’s going on with my voice when another person asks. If I say something and one person doesn’t hear me well or misses it, the other will step up and repeat it so I don’t have to.
The best part of this is I almost never ask. Friends just do this naturally. Even non-friends and acquaintances will fill in so I don’t have to talk as much. It’s a new way of relying on people, and it feels good.