Thursday, February 6, 2014

Talking

I've talked about this before, but I suddenly had a little burst of inspiration to write about talking again. I've heard about so many other diabetics (especially teens) that refuse to talk about their diabetes to their friends, teachers, or really anyone. Some think that if they don't talk about, diabetes will just kind of disappear. Others think that talking about being diabetic will make them seem like an undesirable person to hang out with. I hope I'm not introducing some shocking information to you, but diabetes doesn't go away and it's a part of who you are. You need to accept that and move on with your life. Diabetes does not and will not ever go away if you refuse to talk about it.

Talk about it with your friends. You can get the conversation started by simply testing your blood at lunch. I'm sure they'll ask about it and then you can go from there. You might spend a large chunk of lunch talking about it to explain what the heck is going on with your broken pancreas, but it will be so worth it in the end. Once you get past that awkwardness of not knowing how to bring up your diabetes, you can bring it up and you will benefit from it. Now, when you go on school trips without your parents or a school nurse, you can just quickly bring up how to tell if you are low or high and what to do if you're really low or high and unresponsive. (Hopefully that will never happen, but it's better to do as the boy scouts and always be prepared.)

Your future could be having friends that understand more about this picture than just the headphones! 

Talking about your diabetes also leads to things like you being able to say that you're high without all of your friends looking at you like you are insane. It can also lead to you just casually bringing up the annoyances of diabetes and having people that at least know what you are talking about and not just nodding their heads and pretending to listen. Sometimes they will refer to your CGM as a "Diabetes iPod" because they know that it bothers you. Other times, however, they will be there to listen to you yell about your recent trend of low blood sugars and to show them your CGM graph from the past 24 hours and they will get what you're talking about. Once you break the ice about being diabetic, you friends become much more understanding of what is happening with your compromised endocrine system.

And if for some reason, attempting to break the ice goes something along the lines of, "Eww that's gross. Can you just not talk about it," and they won't compromise or they always crack rude/ offensive jokes about your diabetes, then these people aren't worth your time. It doesn't matter if you've been friends since 1st grade or if you are finally popular because of these 'friends.' If they can't accept and respect all of you: diabetes included, then they aren't real friends. I know that it sucks to have to lose friends because of your diabetes, and it is fine to mad at your broken pancreas for that, but you can't live your life just pushing diabetes to the side.

Whether you like it or not diabetes needs your attention. A lot. And  if you don't give it that attention, you could end up in the hospital because of it. No one wants that. So speak about it. Proclaim to the world (And by world, I mean your friends, unless you wish to broadcast on TV that you are diabetic, then do that.) that you are diabetic. The world wants to know all of you, not just 3/4 of you.

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1 comment :

  1. Sarah, this is amazing. You are so right about all of this. Thanks for sharing.

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