Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Are You My Type?

Anyone who knows that I have diabetes also knows that I am Type 2.  I don't hide this fact. Actually I'm pretty vocal about it.  However, if you were to look at my contacts through the DOC, whether on Facebook, Twitter, or other places, a majority of those people have Type 1. 

Why is this?  I was thinking about this yesterday. Is it because there are more Type 1s online?  Since they are stereotypically younger, are the Type 2s just old and not tech savvy?  Are the Type 1s just more vocal?

Or are the Type 2s in hiding because of society's stereotypes?

That last question hit me hard.  Although I don't fit those stereotypes, I'm always looking out for the comments.  I'm always afraid of hearing the Type 2 jokes.  Calling people who have diabetes fat, lazy, over-eaters hurts.

The cartoon that mimics a math word problem is a good example of misinformation. "Billy had 32 candy bars. He ate 28. What does he have now? Diabetes. Billy has diabetes." No, he does not.  Sugar doesn't cause diabetes. What he has is a major stomach ache!

But back to my original thought.  Although most of the people I know with diabetes, online or in real life, have Type 1, most of the time that does not matter.  We may manage our disease a little differently, but our fears are the same.  Our complications are the same.  Our hope for a cure is the same!

When I meet someone with diabetes, I might ask them what type they have or what resources they use (diet, exercise, oral meds, injection, insulin pump).  However that's just small talk.  Once I've met someone with diabetes, there's a little connection there.  We're part of the same family.  It doesn't matter if we have Type 1, Type 2, LADA, or gestational diabetes.  Yes, I would love to meet more Type 2s my age, but that doesn't mean I can't feel supported by someone who doesn't fit that criteria.  I can still offer support to someone who wears an insulin pump even though I don't.

I still feel that Type 2s need to have a more visible role in the DOC and world in general.  Don't hide! We're all here to support you!


  1. I write about type 2 occasionally, but it isn't the main focus of my blog, just a sideline. In part you are right about not blogging because of the fear of steriotypes. Looking at me, I fit the overweight, ate the wrong way and was too sick with other things to exercise blame game. The other part is the guilt I feel about the inevitable lack of control, even when I have great control most of the time. Besides, avoid carbs, take a walk, take your pills and sleep well just seems frustrating and boring to me.

    1. Lisa, I hope you realize that I'm against stereotyping. Weight isn't always the cause, even if someone is overweight. Regardless, no one has the right to judge. Diabetes is very frustrating. Never thought of boring, but yeah... that fits, too!

  2. Great question, Sue. I often wonder the same thing.

  3. Seriously - how can people with type 2 outnumber people with type 1 like 10 to 1 but the DOC is primarily people with type 1? Where is everyone?!

  4. Amen Sue! We need more T2s to have a presence online. It frustrates me that there aren't more people blogging. However, I'm hoping that there are many there lurking and reading and getting support.

    I love my connections in the DOC, regardless of type. I've learned so much and laughed more than I have in a long time. We PWD are amazing folks! :)