5 Things I'm Tired of Hearing as a Diabetic

I was diagnosed with diabetes when I was 8, so I’ve literally spent a lifetime having people say awkward, annoying, or unhelpful things to me because of my disease. Here are some of the most common ones.

1. “I could never give myself shots all the time.”

Ah, but you could. Humans are pretty stubborn when it comes to survival. If your life depended on it, you would do any number of unpleasant or uncomfortable things to keep breathing. Like cutting your own arm off if it got stuck under a boulder, or eating a pigeon if you’re starving to death. Giving myself shots doesn’t mean I’m brave. It means I’d like to stay alive, thank you very much.

2. “Are you allowed to eat that?”

I appreciate the concern, but you are not my nutritionist, my endocrinologist, or my mother. Please don’t try to tell me how to eat. I’ve spent the last 20 years learning to count carbs and dose insulin. I know better than you do in knowing what my body can handle. Trust me.

3. “Ick. Do you have to test your blood sugar around me?”

This usually comes from the same people as number one. The answer is yes. I’m doing it now, around you because I need to. Because if I don’t find out soon whether I need a snack or another shot, bad things are going to happen, and not just to me. Believe me, you’d much rather I bleed next to you than barf on you or pass out at your feet. If it bugs you, don’t look.

4. “My aunt’s cousin’s ex-wife cured their diabetes by doing yoga, taking chromium, drinking a specific juice, and by going vegan. You should look into that.”

I am overjoyed for your obscure relative and their recent good health. Truly. But not all forms of diabetes are the same. Mine happens to be genetic, so unless I start flossing with uranium or something, I’m stuck with diabetic DNA. If you’re a medical professional or a researcher, I would love to hear about new breakthroughs in diabetes treatment. If your source is a dude who knows a guy who has a friend, best keep your diabetes wisdom to yourself.

5. “You seem cranky. Do you need to check your blood sugar?”

This is the diabetic equivalent of asking if I’m on my period because I’m mad about something. Not every feeling every time is related to my glucose levels. Sometimes it’s because you’ve asking annoying questions about my diabetes.

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