Rant: #RealLifeDiabetes

I’m going to rant. So, deep breath.

Monday morning started off with the following headlines.

Sky News

 

BBC News
Daily Mail

First of all. For world renowned news programmes that apparently pride themselves on the quality of news that they give the general public – Sky News you took until the EIGHTH paragraph to mention that there were in fact TWO types of diabetes. BBC News, you took SIX. Amazingly, The Daily Mail managed to actually mention Type 2 Diabetes in their headlines (I was actually genuinely shocked by this as I’m not a fan of the paper in the slightest, so kudos!)

Now I know it’s not sexy to get into the details for these news outlets. I understand you need clicks to get all those little pennies coming your way. But how difficult is it to use Google? And Diabetes UK, who gave out these statistical figures should be ramming it down their throats that there are two types of diabetes.

I’ve been fit and active my whole life. I very rarely got ill and apart from the usual child hood illnesses I can’t really remember if I was ever a drain on the NHS. I was diagnosed as a Type One Diabetic almost 4 years ago now. I’m at a healthy weight of around 91kg. My body fat percentage is below 15%. I exercise at least 4 times a week. I’ve never ever in my life been described as overweight – in fact, when I was a teenager it was the complete opposite.

This is what it’s actually like living with diabetes.

#RealLifeDiabetes

I need my insulin. I need my test strips. I need my meter and my needles and all the rest of it. And it’s all hard work.

If I was unable to gain access to this for whatever reason – then I probably wouldn’t last too long.

Scratch that.

Definitely wouldn’t last too long.

Diabetes is bloody tough. It’s constant. From the second I wake up to the second I fall asleep it’s on my mind. Everything I do plays a part. What I eat, how I drink, how much exercise I do, how stressful my job is, the weather, how much sleep I’ve got. In fact, I’m sat here now and I can’t think of a time when I could fully relax and let me diabetes just take care of itself.

It just doesn’t happen. I can’t let it happen. The endless complications of having high blood sugar are worrying enough and to deal with a hypo is just awful, no matter how much you try and cover it up.

Yes, some of us put a brave face on it. I know I do! I can’t get rid of this condition. It’s with me for life. 99% of the time I can deal with it and just get on with it all and accept that this is the way it is.

Last week, I was on my couch in tears in my girlfriends arms frustrated at how hard it actually is and that there’s nothing I can do about it to change it.

What doesn’t help is having this stigma of: “if you’re diabetic, you’re fat, obese, lazy and a drain on our taxes! Sort yourself out. Oh, and I must be right because all the media is backing up my claims – look – see here.”

It’s incredibly disheartening, frustrating and upsetting. I did NOTHING to deserve this condition. Nothing. My body just started to attack itself. It damn near almost killed me. It’s taken me years to get to a stage where I can feel ok about it all, both physically and mentally and I’m still not 100% ok with it.

So, “News” before you bang on about how I’m a drain on the system and that I’m going to bankrupt what I consider a fairly awesome health service, just read this.

Phew.

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Dan has been a Type 1 Diabetic since November 2011 and writes about his experiences living with two autoimmune conditions (Type 1 Diabetes and Ulcerative Colitis), nutrition, exercise and living an overall healthier life on his blog and via his social media platforms.

2 thoughts on “Rant: #RealLifeDiabetes

  1. Hi Dan,

    I am a new reader of this blog and just want to say a massive THANK YOU to you for challenging the stigmas that Type Ones are unfortunately labelled with due to news articles such as the ones listed above. I also find it a huge support to know that other diabetics go through the same psychological battles as I myself do from time to time, so please keep doing what you're doing!

    Katie
    (Twitter: @KatieJeanTaylor)

    Like

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