Celebrity Parents 'DWTS' Champ Nyle DiMarco Is 'Very Open' to Having Kids, Would Be Happy If They Were Deaf "Most people assume deaf parents want hearing children; in fact the opposite is true. It's a positive celebration for us," says Nyle DiMarco By Emily Strohm Published on April 13, 2022 03:00 PM Share Tweet Pin Email Trending Videos Photo: Tiffany Saccente Nyle DiMarco isn't sure if he's going to have a family of his own yet, but if the model, producer and deaf activist winds up having kids, he's certain of one thing: "Obviously the most important thing is a healthy child, but if they were deaf, I'd celebrate twice as hard!" The America's Next Top Model and Dancing with the Stars winner, 32, details his own experience growing up in an all-deaf family in his new book Deaf Utopia: A Memoir— and a Love Letter to a Way of Life, out April 19. "My parents embrace deaf culture," DiMarco tells PEOPLE in this week's issue. "Most people assume deaf parents want hearing children; in fact the opposite is true. It's a positive celebration for us." For more from Nyle DiMarco, pick up the latest issue of PEOPLE, on newsstands Friday, or subscribe here. Adam Taylor/Disney General Entertainment Content/Getty Dancing with the Stars' Nyle DiMarco Reveals 'I've Never Wanted to Hear' DiMarco and his family have always communicated with ASL, which he had been taught from birth. "Growing up in the deaf community, I never saw myself as different," he says. "Until I went to a mainstream public school in fifth grade. When weeks of trying to get to know people turned into months, I got really antsy. It was difficult." Now, DiMarco who started his own production company in 2020, is determined to continue breaking barriers for the deaf community. He produced Deaf U — a Netflix reality series that follows the lives of deaf and hard of hearing students at Gallaudet University, his D.C. alma mater — and the documentary short Audible he produced was just nominated for an Oscar. When it comes to his personal life, DiMarco, who identifies as queer, is single and would consider either hearing or deaf partners. "I thought I'd have kids by 27," he says. "I'm still very open, but I'm good either way."