So, I’ve gotten a lot emails asking me my thoughts on the Diabetes Civil War and name change - So, to paraphrase an old Toyota commercial from the early 90’s: You asked for it, you got it, Toyota.
In my eyes, the whole diabetes civil war thing creates conflict and separatism among those of us living the diabetes life, instead of the unity in our diabetes community.
Unity in community = power. Cracks in a foundation (be it in a community or structure) lead to that community or structure crumbling.
I've been a type 1 for 33 years and have, and have lost, many loved ones in my family to type1. And I want us to find a cure, BIG TIME. I'm tired of losing family members to this disease, and my heart always breaks when I hear of another type 1 diagnoses.
And I've also felt the hurt and shame every time someone has blamed me for my disease, or my sister for causing her own death. That hurt, shame, and pain never goes away. That hurt and blame did nothing but continually put me on the defense, and prevented me from developing a good diabetes offensive for quite sometime. That time I can't get back, and I'm sure it's caused damage to me physically, not to mention mentally.
I don’t want to fight others with diabetes just because they have a different type.
I don’t want to take away from their diabetes issues and pain, and I sure as hell don’t want to blame them for their disease.
And I’ll be honest, before I become friends with people who were type 2, there’s a very good chance I might have joined the separatist movement. But thanks to the Diabetes On-line Community, I’ve wised up. I’ve learned that their diabetes struggles mimic my own and that we are on the same side, and when I think back of my type 2 prejudices, I’m ashamed.
Many people with type 2 diabetes have a genetic link to the disease, just like a have a huge genetic link to type 1 diabetes. And regardless of the type, once a person is diagnosed with diabetes, they will always be diabetic. They will always have to stand watch and continually be on guard for diabetes complications.
Many of my type 2 friends work very hard on managing their disease - the very same disease that their parents and grandparents.
And many people don't have a genetic link to diabetes, regardless of the type.
The same thoughts apply for my brothers and sisters with 1.5 Diabetes. Before I became part of the DOC, I had no idea that they even existed. Now, I learn from they every day.
No, I don't want to change the name of my diabetes. I'm Ok with being called a person who has type 1 diabetes.
And I'm OK with people with type 2 diabetes being called a type 2 diabetics, or people with type 2 diabetes. Same goes for those who are type 1.5 diabetics, a.k.a., type1.5-LADA diabetes.
No, what I want to change is the public perception of diabetes - and I will fight to do just that.
My weapons of choice will be education and a loud and constant voice of many, not just my own.
And I say let's start the rumble in the diabetes jungle with the media!
LIsten up Media, I'm talking to you: People with diabetes are not lazy, glutenous, self destructive saps. And regardless of our type, we don't deserve the diabetes card we were dealt.
I demand that the media stop perpetuating diabetes myths and stereotypes - and I will fight to make that happen.
I demand that the media stop running with catchy diabetes sound bites that only have a degree of “truthiness” and only represent one facet of the vast diabetes spectrum. I want the media to differentiate between the types instead of lumping everyone with diabetes together. I want the media to see the many faces of diabetes and I demand that the media do it’s job and take the time and effort to explain ALL the diabetes incarnations and facts.
And while I'm at it, I'll put some of the blame on food manufacturers for adding High Fructose Corn Syrup into everything we eat in this country. Because ironically, it wasn't until HFCS started replacing sugar in foods almost 40 years ago, that people started associating diabetes with people being over weight & lazy sons of bitches who caused their own disease.
I demand that congress not allow the Corn Refiners Association to change the name of High Corn Syrup to the friendlier and incredibly deceptive sounding “Corn Sugar.”
And I will demand and fight for insurance reform so insurance companies can’t charge outrageous monthly premiums, while limiting their clients heath options in the form of denying insulin pumps, cgms, and the number bottles of insulin and test strips per month, and the likes there of. All the while, allowing their CEO's fat payoffs with options to boot!
And I'll continue to fight for a cure for type 1 diabetes every single day of my existence!I 'll fight until the day pigs fly and my feet and knees bleed because I've literally crawled to find a cure. I'll fight until I literally have no voice left. And then, I'll keep writing about it!
But as far as blaming a person with diabetes, I won't do that - because society blames us enough.
Diabetes is a disease that has many types, but we are all part of the same family and on the same side. Regardless of what type of diabetes we live with, our goals are the same.
- To live
- To live a healthy and productive life
- To stop the perpetuation of diabetes myths and stereotypes and educate the public on the diabetes facts
- To find a cure
I choose to focus not on our differences, but the qualities and goals that unite us.
Other posts regarding the Civil War include, but by no means limited too: