#IwishpeopleknewthatDiabetes means that you are continually being judged – even in a place that’s supposed to be filled with holiday cheer. And that’s effed up.
Dear Lady at the Christmas Party,
I know that you meant well, I really do. But when you looked over at me in disgust, shook your head as I input the carb and bg count into my insulin pump, and right before I bit into a delicious Christmas cookie, then said loudly – so everyone by the dessert table could here,“and you with diabetes, you’re the last person who should be having those cookies, you know better!”
You not only put me on the defensive, you made me feel like crap, you made me angry.
And you made me feel that I had to make excuses for doing exactly what I was supposed to do.
You made me feel like a bad person and a bad person with diabetes – and I am neither.
I kept it together, remained calm and I didn’t yell, even though I wanted to.
With that being said, DON”T F^CKING JUDGE ME.
Don’t assume (and tell me,) I can’t eat that.
Don’t assume (and tell me,) I’m playing Russian roulette with my life.
Don’t assume that I don’t care about my health, because I do and I’ve worked incredibly hard to own/make peace, and work with my diabetes these 38 years, 24X7 and without a day off.
Since I was diagnosed as a child, I’ve been calculating and tabulating every piece of food I put into my mouth – You, a stranger who doesn’t know me from Adam, had no right to judge and make assumptions about me or my diabetes.
For 38 years I’ve had well meaning people focus on the food I put in my mouth and I’m tired of it.
It’s one thing when it’s a friend or family member who genuinely cares and wants to know – but another when you, a stranger and badge carrying member of the Diabetes Police publicly judges me in an accusatory tone about my diabetes – even if your concern came from a place of good, your tone and accusations were anything but,
And don’t look at me like I had three heads when I respond to your accusations with: Excuse me, but you really don’t what you’re talking about.
As a child and teenager with diabetes, I snuck food food because the diabetes diet was so strict and unforgiving – And wore the diabetes guilt around my neck for a very long time.
As an adult with diabetes I’ve worked hard to remove that anchor of guilt and replace it with acceptance and Diabetes Advocacy
I tried educating you nicely and I didn’t want to argue, or get into a heated discussion about what I could or couldn’t eat with someone who refused to hear what I had to say -and I didn’t want to take the focus off the party.
I wanted to enjoy the moment for many reasons.
I wanted to celebrate with friends.
I wanted to meet new people – but not in an argumentative and accusatory way.
I wanted to eat my goddamned Christmas Cookies I bolused for because it’s Christmas and a lot of work went into me enjoying those cookies.
Work like continually checking my blood sugars, eating a low carb lunch the day of the party, working out daily, eating healthy 80% of the time, always seeing numbers when I look at food, and always trying, but not aways nailing it, when it comes to living with diabetes.
I want to enjoy food because I want a healthy relationship with food.
I will not be judged by you or anyone else.
I couldn’t continue a discussion with a person who refused to dialogue, even after I politely explained that yes, I can indeed eat these cookies.
And I know your concern came from a place of loss – I get that, but I couldn’t keep talking with someone who refused to hear what I was saying,
So I wished you good health; happy holidays, and a merry Christmas to you and yours and walked away and didn’t look back.
Kelly created the #Iwishpeopleknewthatdiabetes website and can be found blogging at Diabetesaliciousness and tweeting @diabetesalish and feels really weird about writing about herself in the 3rd person.
Thanks for saying what we are all thinking! You are a better person than me – I DON’T know that she meant well. She sounds a little passive aggressive.
Way to go Kelly!!!! I’ve only had to deal w the Disbetes Police for 3 yrs but my heart goes out to all u veterans who have had to deal w this for ur entire lives!! I look to u all for guidance on how to respond and deal w these situations!! So thank u all for paving the way for newbie a like me!!!
I hope u were able to enjoy ur cookies after all the prep u put into getting ready for the party!!!
Merry Christmas !!! HUGS!!!!
Reading this blog has touched so many nerves with me. It brought back all the familiarity of the struggle of being a T1D. Thank you Kelly for giving my frustrations a voice. Please keep up the great work
YES! YES to all of this! Fortunately, I have an understanding family, and have only had a few people make uneducated remarks about my eating habits (which are healthy 80% of the time 😉 ). I’m still anticipating that one person to say something rude to me so I can educate them…. 😀
I am a 28 year veteran of type 1 Diabetes with an A1C of 5.8. It was requested of me to make and bring a cheesecake to a family funeral. A particularly judgemental aunt told me that my funeral would be next if I didn’t start taking better care of myself when she saw me eating a piece of that cheesecake. She even had the audacity to tell me that it was disrespectful to the rest of the family to abuse myself in such a callous way at such a somber time. Oh, my. Really!? I ate another piece of cheesecake, that I didn’t even want, just to show her disrespect…grrrrrrr. Stay Strong! Hold your insulin pump high and your middle finger higher!
I’m literally crying right now, I love all you people; lets hold our middle fingers high all together now!! It’s about time!
I can relate so much to this anecdote. I wish somehow there was a way to put people like this in their place without coming off looking like I’m ‘biting’ back… Unfortunately even taking the time to educate with patience can be met with obstinance at times, and often a group mentality as I encountered in my last work place, where not one person coudl fathom that I (a diabetic of 20 years) might know more about modern diabetes care than them.
35 years dealing with people who don’t know what they’re talking about! I usually say ” a carb is a carb” and they look at me funnier….
Why does anyone feel they have the right to criticize what someone is eating? Any yes, it has happened to me. It’s annoying.
I’ve gotten the comment also that if I weren’t so fat, I wouldn’t have T2 diabetes. Oy Vey!