Monday, May 16, 2016

Why Am I Here? Not Because of Me Anymore.

So why did I come here?  I guess you would say "it is complicated."  I originally started reading and becoming active the on-line community because I thought that it was critical to helping myself.  And in the end that was true.  I learned a lot from others and eventually learned to share with others.  I attained better control of my diabetes and achieve (some level) of peace with my diabetes.  But over time things changed.  I changed.  It became more than just peer to peer support.  Eventually it became important to try to effect change.

As I became more and more involved in the DOC I realized we heard a lot about Type 1, but rarely about Type 2.  I found this strange as 90% of people with diabetes have Type 2.  It isn't like those with Type 2 have anything less to say, they suffer basically the same sorts of challenges.  Heck, more people with Type 2 use insulin than people with T1.  People with Type 2 suffer the same sorts of complications.  And even worse those with Type 2 often suffer from things that don't affect those with Type 1 as much.  We suffer routinely poor medical care, lack of access to treatment and worst of all there are terrible stigmas and misunderstandings.  I am so tired of the constant message that Type 2 is caused by bad lifestyle decision and that we sat on the couch with chips ("crisps" to those of you in the UK).  We are led to believe that we caused our diabetes and that we are to blame not only for causing our diabetes but for our failure to "cure" ourselves.  And it isn't just mainstream media, but medical professionals who tell us this.

So my message has been to start a conversation to change all that.  To dispel the misconceptions.  To change the conversation and stop using words like "Prevent" and "Reverse" diabetes.  And in the end I want to stand up and tell everyone with Type 2 (and any kind of diabetes) that you shouldn't feel blame, shame and stigma about your diabetes.  To that end I feel driven to model the behavior and feelings I talk about, I write about it and I talk about it.  This has become not only my message but my mission.  It won't be easy but every person I touch who rethinks their concepts of Type 2 is a win.  I hope to change the world one little step at a time.

11 comments:

  1. I totally agree. Sending this to my recently T2 dx'd cousin. When are you coming back to NH? I love your shirt!

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    1. I dearly miss my visits to NH. I am long overdue and do hope to see you soon.

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  2. Wow, you make such a good point-how majority of people are T2s but majority of blogs are T1s....thanks for sharing your story with us!

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    1. I really feel we are all part of the same tribe, I just want those of us with T2 to feel they belong.

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  3. Always glad to read the thoughtful posts on your blog and your messages at TuDiabetes. Sometimes I agree with you and other times I disagree. But I always learn something:-)

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    1. I've never been one to take mishy mashy views. Some may agree, some may not. Even those that don't agree may still end up my life long friends. I hope you are in that category.

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  4. Brian I wish you could get more T2's to join our blogging efforts.

    I referred your blog to the TUDiabetes blog page for the week of May 16, 2016.

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  5. I also find it odd that there are so few Type 2 blogs even though Type 2 makes up the majority of diabetes and they need support just as those of us with Type 1 do. Hopefully your blog and posts will help to empower people, maybe even encourage them to start blogging, too.

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    1. I do want to change that. I want people with T2 to be able to talk about their condition. It isn't something to be ashamed of or feel stigma. I have type 2 but it doesn't mean I have it to myself and it doesn't consign me to poor outcomes. I have type 2 and I can make choices to lead a long healthy, happy life.

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  6. I think we need more bloggers like you in the DOC.

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