Type 2 starts out as insulin resistance. The insulin resistance causes the cells to become unresponsive to insulin, which doesn't allow glucose to be released from the blood stream. This makes a person's blood sugar high. In response, the pancreas produces more insulin. Over time, the pancreas wears out from producing so much extra insulin that it can't produce insulin anymore. However, this process takes a long time. If a person who initially develops insulin resistance pays attention to their body and notices signs of high blood sugar, or even if they don't, but they go to the doctor once in a while for check-ups, their blood or urine test would show high blood sugar. Lots of type 2's can reverse their insulin resistance at this point with diet, exercise, and oral medication. This, in turn, takes the strain off of their pancreas, so it doesn't have to produce as much extra insulin.
So, if it is caught early enough and steps are taken to reduce insulin resistance, a T2 would not eventually have to take insulin. Unfortunately a lot of people think if they ignore if for long enough it will go away, but it only gets worse. Another unfortunate thing is that so many T2's are afraid to or just refuse to take insulin, when really, beginning to take insulin earlier might actually help alleviate some of the strain on their pancreas.
I really don't want to argue with anyone on here. We all have T1, and we all have to to deal with all the same crap that goes along with it. I never said I would rather have T2. I'd rather have a healthy pancreas and insulin response. But honestly, I DO understand the mechanisms behind T2 and T1, and I just think that getting diagnosed with T1 as a child, teen, or young adult sets you up for a lot harder of a life than getting diagnosed with T2 at 60 does. I had an aunt die from complications of T1 at the age of 43. She died a horrible death, so when I hear someone who is actually older than she was when she died complaining about how hard their T2 is, it just really bothers me. :