Thursday, December 11, 2014

During The Holidays People With Diabetes Will Be Judged - Lets Not Judge One Another~

You know that "thing" that happens with your Facebook feed where it changes in the instant and you read a post for only a split of a second, but REALLY wanted to read/comment on? 
Yeah, that thing happened to me a couple of days ago. 
I'd just clicked on my Facebook tab and noticed a status ( and for the life of me I don't who posted or if it was in a group,) blaming other PWDs for not taking care themselves and developing ketoacidoses, and referring to those who develop Ketoacidosis as being irresponsible.   
I didn't agree. 
Just as I was about to click on the link and share my thoughts on the subject, FaceBook changed my feed to a all new statuses and no matter how far I scrolled down, I couldn't find the status that made my heart hurt and blood simmer. 

I've been marinating on that status a lot and here's how I would have responded to the status if I hadn't lost the chance. 
First: let's stop blaming one another for not being perfect re: their diabetes management, developing ketoacidoses or complications. Your diabetes may vary and everyone can have a challenging diabetes moment/day/month/year.   

Second: Ketoacidoses can happen happen quickly and unexpectedly and even when you're doing everything right. You could develop ketoacidoses because you're sick/getting sick; you could have miscalculated bolusing for a meal, your infusion site might have stopped working, your insulin could have gone bad or you might have been disconnected from your pump for to long, or 100 other scenarios that have nothing to do with being irresponsible.
And just maybe irresponsibility did come into play - but who are you to assume and judge what's going on in someone else's head. 
Lets stop pointing fingers and blaming one anther for being anything less than perfect when it comes to diabetes. 
On a personal note: I was hospitalized twice in college with ketoacidoses because of the flu and both experiences were HORRIBLE. 
3 weeks ago I had unexpected pale pink ketones and was only in the low 200s. 
I had no idea as to why or how I'd come to the point of ketones, but there I was, dealing with ketones. 
I felt terrible, and not because of the ketones spilling into my system - I felt terrible because I WAS spilling ketones. I FELT LIKE A FAILURE. 

Shit happens in life, and life with diabetes. 

Diabetes is hard and we are continually being judged by people and the media who don't understand what it's like to live with diabetes, we don't need it from people who do.
Shaming patients with diabetes doesn't work when a healthcare professional is the one doing it and it won't work when we do it to another in our tribe. 
One of the insidious things about diabetes is that it can turn on a dime and just when we think everything is smooth sailing. 
So if you see someone struggling or in need of help, help them navigate the diabetes waters so they can find and be open to receiving that help.
In this season of giving and 'good will towards man', don't forget to include your fellow PWDs, because there but for the grace of diabetes go I, everyone makes mistakes, every one needs help and we are in this together. 

Extend a helping hand and offer up kind words of encouragement when it comes to dealing with diabetes and those struggling with their diabetes. 

After 37 years of living with diabetes, I've learned from experience that at one time or another, there will indeed be a time when you will be the in need of massive doses of both. 


StephenS said...

Thanks for this post Kelly. Our blood sugar is affected by dozens of things, most of which aren't our fault. So why blame ourselves or others?

Anonymous said...

As a type 2 Diabetic, I hear constantly how I am "at fault" for my diabetes. Well, yes, I am obese, and I probably did bring a lot of it on myself, but I have a long history of diabetes in my family. It makes me very sad when I hear people with type 1 diabetes try to tell me that their diabetes is harder or I've even heard theirs is better than mine. Come on folks, it is diabetes. Our pancreases are not working properly, we are not processing insulin properly. Whether we have completely dead pancreases or are insulin resistant, it's just not functioning properly. One is not better or harder than the other. Diabetes is not good or easy. We are all in this together, lets all stick together.