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Help please - how to deal with people's perceptions

Discussion in 'Type 1 Diabetes' started by Sunshine_Kisses, Jun 21, 2013.

  1. Sunshine_Kisses

    Sunshine_Kisses · Well-Known Member

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    Hey, I'm wondering if some of you can offer some advice, really struggling with this...

    Was diagnosed type 1, after a bit of a faff - and am just getting round to telling people as was just trying to deal with it myself first... Was at a place where I kinda felt ok with it - I'm not insulin dependent yet, and am currently working really hard to preserve what pancreas function I have for as long as possible. This is pretty tough at times; I keep to less than 50g carbs (as a vegan (who eats fish) this is pretty hard work / restrictive in itself), I run a few times a week, and in the days inbetween I make sure I do other excercise be it weights at home, walking, power yoga etc. I am not overweight (bmi now 21, was 23 at diagnosis) and eat a lot of 'superfoods' plus read *a lot* to see if there's anything else I can be doing... My point is - I accept that I may well require insulin at some stage, but in the meantime I'm trying to be very proactive - and I don't mind this - except...

    When I'm telling people I'm diabetic, they instantly say - 'oh, that's pretty easy to reverse - I've a friend who is too, he/she just lost weight/ate a bit healthier' - or - 'oh yes, I read an article about how to reverse that' etc etc... Now I'm very careful to say I'm type 1, but they just think I'm 'coming up with excuses' - I can see it in their faces, or in some instances they even go on to say 'yea, this guy in such and such thought it was impossible too, but then he cut the **** out of his diet and he was fine again' - one woman even told me all I needed to do was cut out pop - I've never drunk pop in my life!!

    I'm trying not to be affected by it, but I'm finding it really, really challenging to not become really defensive, and come off looking like I'm being '******' or lazy...
    Last night I actually had to walk away mid conversation from a man who, after the initial 'oh you can easily reverse that' and me calmly saying 'I think you're getting mixed up with type 2', said to me 'no, I know diabetes, you just need to exercise a bit and eat a bit healthier'.

    Sorry for the rant, but not sure how to deal with these situations, and feeling really upset that people are judging me as being someone who's just not trying - especially when I am trying so very much :-(
     
  2. zolabud

    zolabud Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    That is precisely why forums like this are so important....

    You can always come on and have a rant and you will get sympathy and a lot of common sense.
     
  3. Squire Fulwood

    Squire Fulwood Type 2 · Expert

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    You are welcome and the good thing is I still have one dry shoulder left.

    I have had similar and I am a type 2. One friend said all obese people are diabetic. I asked if he could explain how Sir Ranulph Feines got diabetes, or Sir Steve Redgrave. You don't get sensible answers.

    I have never known so many "experts" who don't have the condition themselves.
     
  4. mrman

    mrman Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    Used to get really p"d off with comments like that too! Now just ignore them, my close friends and family understand it, anyone elses opinions i couldn't really give a xxxx about. If they do happen to have a sensible comment or ask about the condition I'm happy to discuss, If they start talking nonsense just ignore it and move on. After all I'm sure im ignorant to a point about other conditions I don't have.

    Sent from my GT-S5360 using DCUK Forum mobile app
     
  5. ljwilson

    ljwilson Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    I just don't tell people!!

    Interesting that you have been diagnoed Type 1 but not on insulin, I have not heard that before

    Lorna
     
  6. mo1905

    mo1905 Type 1 · BANNED

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    It is very annoying and I still get the "too much beer" comments etc but you really do have to learn to ignore these comments. People generally are not trying to be nasty, it's just ignorance. We both know how much we've learned in a really short time. How much did you know before ? Me, very little. I just thought diabetics couldn't eat sugar ! I still know very little about a multitude of other conditions and have probably said the wrong thing at one time or another. It's difficult, with a few work colleagues, I've tried to educate them about diabetes and some are very happy to listen, others just are happy to make funny remarks and stay uninformed. I have just tried to ignore these remarks now though, I'm not going to waste precious time getting stressed and constantly snapping at people who know nothing about my condition. Close friends and family fully understand and support me, that's what matters. Good luck !


    Sent from the Diabetes Forum App
     
  7. Sunshine_Kisses

    Sunshine_Kisses · Well-Known Member

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    Yes... I get those comments too. With a 'see, you're not really type 1 are you' undertone to it. I even had it from a consultant yesterday (was talking to him about something unrelated, but diabetes came up, I said I was type 1, he said "really? are you on insulin?' - no, I replied.... 'well then are you sure you're type 1?' he said... yes, according to my endocrinologist I am... "why did he diagnos you type 1?' he asked - because my original fasting glucose was 12 and my GAD came back at over 1,600 - when the normal range is below 5, I said... 'Oh, right, yes, you definitely are then' he said - and quickly changed the subject.

    I'm not on insulin as I'm recently diagnosed and in the "honeymoon" phase apparently... I aslo have *no* sugar whatsoever, no grains, beans, dairy, meat - my carb intake is below 50g a day and I'm basically living off salads / nuts / oils / 'superfoods' like chlorella powder with a bit of fish. That's why I'm not yet on insulin. I don't mind going to the efforts I do to help preserve whatever function is left in my pancreas, but I do mind when people start to question/judge me and imply I either can't be type 1 or I should just buck up and try a bit harder.
     
  8. Sunshine_Kisses

    Sunshine_Kisses · Well-Known Member

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    Thanks guys... I'm usually pretty OK at being, well, OK - but this is really getting to me - haven't been able to stop thinking about it and feeling very sorry for myself today... not a good day :'(
     
  9. mo1905

    mo1905 Type 1 · BANNED

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    Sunshine, you're too clever to let these people get to you. Rise above them. They won't change. Oh, and don't even go down the "honeymoon phase" thing lol ! I am in this too and I've tried to explain this a few times and people think I've lost the plot. My sister-in-law has been T1 for 30yrs, even she never heard of it ! KEEP CALM AND CARRY ON lol ;-)


    Sent from the Diabetes Forum App
     
  10. Mr Happy

    Mr Happy · Well-Known Member

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    Just calmly tell them that you hope a proper cure for diabetes will be found before a cure for their immense stupidity...


    Sent from the Diabetes Forum App
     
  11. Robinredbreast

    Robinredbreast Type 1 · Oracle

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    All this s new to me, I have never had a negative word said to me. It could be because I've had it a long time now and back in the 80's when I was diagnosed, people were concerned and asked how I was ( I was a couple of hundred miles from home, very ill in hospital). Times have really changed, in pharmacies now you can get help to see if you are at risk of diabetes with preventable advice. Many years ago if you had a medical condition, like diabetes or epilepsy, it was ' oh the poor man has to look after his wife because she has diabetes' treated with kid gloves and looked after.

    Rise above it, most don't know diddly squat about how people get through years of diabetes, it's hyped up by the media.

    I have had to toughen up over the years, when I was much younger I wouldn't say boo to a goose, I do hold back on certain things but I would probably of ended the conversation with ' I would like to say I've had a perfectly wonderful time, but this wasn't it, good bye'

    Hang on in there.

    Best wishes RRB
     
  12. Sunshine_Kisses

    Sunshine_Kisses · Well-Known Member

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    Thanks guys... Think I'm probably just a bit tired so doesn't really help matters... Just throwing myself a little pity party over here! And I can't even drown my sorrows with an extra large tub of Hagen Daz!! (Or even a mini tub ;-) )

    I'm just getting a bit worn down with fighting everyone... It's honestly been at least 6 months of trying to get to the bottom of what was 'wrong' with me - and feeling awful/ill all that time... And of course no-one getting it cos I didn't even know what was up... I thought at least now I had a diagnosis I'd have some understanding... But nope - I'm still fighting with drs cos I've cut my carbs so much they don't seem to understand why my blood sugars have come down (hello, didn't you guys study, like, a lot to get your job???) and now people, who either don't believe I could be type 1 or type 2, or think I just need to pull my socks up and sort myself out...

    And if one more person says to me (after I've already said that type 1 is autoimmune related) - 'but you, I don't understand it, you're so healthy' I think I might self combust...!

    Or reply with mr happys response, which was brill, thank you :)

    Similarly if another person tries to tell me it's all the fat I'm eating that's blocking my insulin receptors, I'm not sure I can be accountable for my actions... I don't eat meat for personal reasons, have allergies to eggs, wheat and dairy, any form of carb / grain / sugar makes my blood sugars spike - so please, tell me what I'm meant to eat if I'm not supposed to have 'so much fat as its blocking all my insulin receptors'???

    Sorry, as I said, bad day... :-/
     
  13. Anonymous

    Anonymous · Guest

    Maybe just be selective who you tell. Or, when they say it can be reversed, say "Thanks, what about your looks" :twisted:
    Or, reply "OK ... citebaid then". :crazy:
     
  14. Robinredbreast

    Robinredbreast Type 1 · Oracle

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    I think most people go through bad times with diabetes from time to time.

    Try not to worry, have a good weekend and there is always, help, support and advice from your fellow diabetics on here. Remember you are not alone. I do hope you start to feel better very soon.

    Best wishes RRB
     
  15. lrw60

    lrw60 · Well-Known Member

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    I remember my childhood. I had very ginger hair, masses of freckles and lots of puppy fat. Luckily, those in the know would tell me that my hair would darken, my freckles would dissapear and my fat would fade away. I would then be normal. Thank goodness none of that happened because I would hate to be normal! BORING!!!! I am sure you don't want to be rude sunshine, as I am sure that most of the people who talk to you mean well. Perhaps you look too nice to have diabetes, me? Oh I definitely look as though I should have several such illnesses. Shouldn't be allowed out in the daylight me. Smile sweetly sunshine and nod. They will go away and annoy someone else fairly soon.
     
  16. Ausra

    Ausra · Well-Known Member

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    One guy told me once:'I knew a woman who always ate salads and all healthy stuff only to find out she had cancer all over her body'.
    Some people just think they know everything, when they don't know simple facts about illness. Everytime i have hypo my boyfriend says:'oh..you have your insulin with you right?' and when i explain him i need sugar, not insulin..he say:'ok let me get chocolate for you'... :D we live together for almost a year now, but to be honest healthy people they are just not interested in what is happening to you..i wasn't till i got diabetes myself. Why to waiste brain space remembering stuff that has got nothing to do with you. It is annoying though when they pretend to know everything when they only read one story somewhere on the magazine or heard of it from somebody..after all they just trying to keep the conversation probably..now imagine someone was saying he's got brain tumor..i have no idea what would i say to this person..probably some rubbish i have heard once :D
     
  17. elaine77

    elaine77 · Well-Known Member

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    Hi all,

    Not sure where uve been the last 20 years then ljwilson? The medical profession have been aware of slow onset type 1 since the 80s-90s where insulin is not needed in the early stages.

    I was just about to say that I too am not only fed up of people saying it's reversible but also assuming you can't be type 1 because you are not insulin dependent!

    So, in the words of my sons endocrine consultant "THERE ARE ONLY TWO TYPES OF DIABETES AND THEY ARE NOT 'INSULIN DEPENDENT' and 'NON-INSULIN DEPENDENT' THEY ARE AUTO-IMMUNE AND NON-AUTO-IMMUNE DIABETES"

    Since many type 2s actually need insulin i am inclined to agree.

    Since nobody in the medical profession can or has ever been able to explain what causes auto immune diabetes, nor the rate at which it progresses, basically, if you have auto immune diabetes you are type 1 and if you have non auto immune diabetes you are type 2 regardless of whether you are dependent on insulin or not.

    To be honest with you tho sunshine I don't tell them and if they ask I say I'm type 1.5 at the minute as I'm auto immune but not insulin dependent. They generally don't ask me to elaborate. Thankfully.


    Diagnosed with GD in 2010, Completely disappeared postpartum. Re-diagnosed December 2012 with type 1.5 diabetes, age 26, BMI 23 currently controlled by only Metformin, 500mg twice a day.
     
  18. michaeldavid

    michaeldavid Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    Thanks very much, elaine77.

    What you've written makes good sense to me.

    It's simple, and it seems to explain a lot.
     
  19. Mr Happy

    Mr Happy · Well-Known Member

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    Elaine, I disagree somewhat with the 2 types statement and would suggest there are several million types, no two cases are ever the same.

    No probs sunshine, give them some back. I can be an insult consultant if you like...

    Sent from the Diabetes Forum App
     
  20. mrman

    mrman Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    Have to agree with Elaine,.was very well explained and we'll put. Whilst there may be many variations of type 1 or 2 ie causes, body types,age etc the principal remains in simplistic terms 2 types auto immune and non auto immune. Auto immune will result in no insulin production, non auto immune results in insulin resistance.
     
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