Are Non-Diabetics Really Out To Get Us?

So maybe it's just me but it seems like there are a lot of people on this site who seem to carry resentment towards non-diabetics or those who don't have to deal with it at some personal level.  And maybe I'm just good at looking the other way or really not caring but it seems like we should probably deal with this better.  

We're different, that's not really up for debate, and whether you want to admit it or not... if your pancreas doesn't work, then you're different.  But it's not really a bad thing.  Pretty much all of society has trouble dealing with different aspects of "being different."  I know before I was diagnosed, I probably would have curiously examined someone giving them self a shot.  

I have people, friends, anyone who at some point and time eventually say something ignorant about diabetes or ask me a question I would honestly just find stupid, but I mean I don't blame them.  Again, I'm different, and I don't expect everyone to revolve their knowledge base around my condition. 

I just think a lot of times we take things way too personally, whether it be that we let something get to us, or whether the root cause is that we're not handling it well ourselves and route that anger through other areas.  

Let me know your thoughts!

I agree. And I've said this a million times on this site. It seems a lot of people are overly sensitive.

Matt and C, I do have to say that somepeople say that I am different. I do all so say that I am different,The only resons I say this is because I act  way different than my friends do and I ready dont do well on my school work. But that may be because I have been a diabeic since I was 3 1/2. But I do Have to say That I AGREE with both of you we diabetic's are different than other people.

Good for you, Matt & C.  I do not have diabetes, but my daughter was recently diagnosed.  She is 8. She doesn't feel different.  She really wants everyone around her to know about her D and she has armed herself with a  lot of knowledge and is educating all her little friends, and even her teachers around her.  She is probably too young to have a comment for you, but I hope that she will take it all in stride, much like you and C do. 

 I told and still tell my daughter  she is no...different than anyone else.It is just that she has to put insulin into her body-while others have it there already....I have never asked her if she feels different.I know at times she does,but I hope not much. I really see her as no different -just that she has more task to take care of....none of this makes any sense,does it,ha :)

I do believe my daughter is different in a way because well she has to do things to keep herself alive that most of her peers do not. I dont think that is a excuse to treat her differently tho. It sucks for her and right now us too but I dont think others are out to get her. I dont find it wrong to stand up for her tho if she is being mistreated because of her D or to take the time to educate others on her D so she isnt mistreated or treated differently. To me its not much different than my boys being autistic or a breastfeeding mother asked to cover her childs head she she does so. You have to stand up for what is right. I wont raise her to be a victim to any ones stupidity but I will teach her how to inform and educate people who may give her crap for it with her head held high.

We are different, but that doesn't mean we have to allow ourselves to be victims.  I do not have diabetes, but my son does.  Of all the ways to be different, this seems to be one of the more innocuous.  I don't think that any of us think that the non-diabetics are out to get us, but the reality is we fear what we do not understand.  Is Oprah out to get us?  No.  But had she better understood the disease, I think her show would have handled it differently.  Instead of getting angry when people misunderstand, our efforts should be to kindly and directly get the message out and educate people so that we're not misunderstood.  There will always be some people who don't want to understand anything new, but for most people, a little knowledge goes a long way.  I think the big problem is the differences between type 1 and type 2, and the prevalance of type 2.  It's hard for people to understand that type 1 is a totally different disease, so they think we're nuts when we make demands for our kids that people with type 2 may never have to deal with.

In a nutshell, different isn't bad, and knowledge is power.  The more people we can get to understand, the better off we all are.

Well I agree with you, for a fact we are different, and I can't say that a disfunctional pancreas is not a bad thing, frankly it sucks.  That doesn't mean I am going to give up, in fact I have/will even use it as a catalyst to push me further in life.  So potentially in that respect, diabetes could be deemed as a positive thing.

I don't think anyone feels like non-diabetics are out to get us, just  that this forum is just a safe place for people to vent their frustrations with all aspects of dealing.  Sometimes, a look or comment can just push you a little too far on a rough day and having a place to get that off your chest and move on helps. 

I'm not different, I'm just... special =)

I have a normal life. Study, Work, Hobbies, but the difference is that I have to carry a little machine. Like a person with a By-Pass, a cane, that stuff.

I think that it is our obligation as t1 diabetics to educate and advocate non diabetics.  We have this disease (at least at this time) for the rest of our lives--why dwell on negatives of the disease?  I may be glanced at while I am pulling my insulin pump out to eat at work, or gawked at by complete strangers while out in public.  But instead of closing off and acting like it weakens me, I look them in the eye and say "I'm a type one diabetic, if you have any questions, feel free to ask me."  Instead of hanging my head low, I am empowered and strong.  It doesn't make me different, it makes me stronger.

It's safe to say, in my opinion, that most instances when non-diabetics hassle us are because of lack of education.  I don't think it's fair to be angry at those who don't understand our disease and make it known.  What does bother me is when people refuse to acknowledge what you've told them about diabetes, or insist that they are right and you are wrong.  My friends and teachers have asked me about diabetes before and I know that even if they are misinformed, they want the truth, and if they don't believe me, (I can only think of one teacher who has done this), it is because they care too much to trust me alone.  So no, I don't think that most non-diabetics are "out to get us."  It just takes effort from them and from us to reach an understanding. 

i fully agree! it’s not like people make those kinds of comments that bother diabetics in order to annoy us or sound stupid! i mean, honestly, if we were not diabetic, how much would we know about diabetes? i mean, really? and how many of you didn’t care to learn until your life depended on it? i feel like we just have to realize that people really DO mean well when they say, “oh, don’t eat that, it has sugar,” they just don’t know. which is why i always give people a little bit of background so they can be somewhat educated, you know? and i also fully agree that a lot of people are too sensitive about a lot of different things, and that being diabetic just amplifies that for those who are over-sensitive.

Obviously non-diabetics aren't out to get us.  I don't think anyone really believes that they are.  I think this is just a safe place to do some venting about the things that that wear on us from time to time.  There's a lot of frustration and a very steep learning curve especially when you are new to diabetes and you are trying to juggle learning about the disease yourself and correcting others' misconceptions.  Obviously, it's not okay to go off on someone for asking, "is it okay for you to eat that?"  But I think it is 100% okay to complain a little here when you're annoyed at being asked that question for the 500th time.

I agree with what Melinda and Katie have said. 

For me, it is simple, I don't get angry anymore after experiencing ignorance, discrimination, humor, fear, discuss, anger, embarrassment, awe, anger, enlightenment, surprise, love, concern and care in my 40 years of T1D. 

So, I don't get angry anymore, I see it as an opportunity to spread some knowledge and educate those who do not yet understand what T1D is and all the challenge that come with it. 

I feel strongly that if the opportunity for education presents itself, it is not in my interest or the interest of other T1Ds to miss the chance to educate those in need, diabetic or non-diabetic.

I like the feeback that I've gotten here.  I wasn't actually expecting nearly as many comments that seemed in agreement with me.  Maybe I'm just really lucky in that I don't feel that I've ever been "victimized" due to my condition and the most I've had to "stand up" for myself would be to explain to someone why I can or can't eat something, or what I can or can't do.  Pretty sure it's never really been more complicated that that.  I just don't think you can expect people who are uneducated about diabetes to not treat us differently in some way at some point.  But no big deal.  God only know how many diseases I have no knowledge of.  I hope someone suffering from another condition doesn't expect me to know and understand everything.  Maybe it will be different if I become a parent, and I pray to God that I don't pass this condition on, but I still hope that, either way, I keep realistic expectations of society.

If you do pass it on, you'll be wise on everything so you'll be able to pass on the wisdom as well.  I agree with the posts that say that this is a safe place to vent.  That's a good thing, as long as we don't reinforce negativity, which I haven't seen so far on the site.