Do you hide your diabetes

By luked Latest Reply 2012-10-27 11:23:28 -0500
Started 2012-09-05 04:16:32 -0500

Do you hide your diabetes?

Some have mixed feelings and emotions about telling others that they are a diabetic. I mentioned my disease to a couple of friends, but they looked so puzzled. They did not know what I was talking about, and I doubted they even believed me. That was probably because they did not know enough about it to be concerned.

There did not seem to be any reason for doing so. I was alone as a diabetic, except for my family, But there was still something missing!

Since my diagnose, That essentially changed my life in a very important way, There are so many people online who are diabetics, or they have family members with diabetes. I believe that at least 80% of what I know about diabetes was learned on the internet. I have been helped in so many ways, and my control and my life has improved.

Acceptance and lifestyle changes are important simply because I am very comfortable telling people about my diabetes, and about diabetes in general. It is very comforting and rewarding to give and receive help online. I will never hide my diabetes. I hope my online friends feel the same way!

36 replies

kirsty j
kirsty j 2012-10-27 11:23:28 -0500 Report

I don't hide it I tell my close freinds about it my not so close freinds I don't tell but they still know about it when people make comments about it but try not to be mean I get a bit upset and when people think I have diabetes because I eat to much I get upset as it's cause my pancrious dus not work

lacat87 2012-10-13 14:56:41 -0500 Report

I think it's extremely important to tell co-workers that you have diabetes, just not wear a banner around your neck! It may come in handy when you really need them for emergencies. It could educate them about diabetes that they never knew about it.

pontufex 2012-10-12 19:15:04 -0500 Report

Anyone who knows me knows that I'm a diabetic for the simple fact I have no fear of being pitied, mocked, or avoided. If they have an issue with my diabetes, oh bleeping well.
I've never tried to hide it, nor am I ashamed of it, it's just another hurtle for me to overcome and conquer. Of course I'm not on the street corner like a dooms day prophet proclaiming to the winds of my condition, but when someone I know sees me eating a salad instead of a greasy cheese burger and enough french fries to feed France for a month, I happily tell them of my condition and let them know I'm a better man for it. Yep, I just said my diabetes has made me a better man. Having a heart condition is one thing, but diabetes opened my eye's to the early grave I was wheeling myself towards, and so I eat better, I enjoy what I eat more, I smile every day I wake up and can see, or feel my limbs.
If someone asks me a question I answer to the best of my ability, nor do I mince words. I have gone into graphic detail in recent days with a couple people who questioned my new lifestyle, explaining to them the ramifications of not changing. I do find it somewhat humorous seeing the look I get when I describe gangrene and festering wounds that won't heal, I guess I'm just weird that way.

jigsaw 2012-10-12 18:35:25 -0500 Report

I don't hide it, and I don't advertise it. Most people really have little if any idea of what diabetes really is! After 18 years of living with diabetes, I'm still learning about it, and so are my doctors!!! It certainly doesn't define who I am, but it has helped me to live more of a healthier lifestyle than many.

lacat87 2012-10-13 14:49:21 -0500 Report

Imagine the shocked look I get when I tell people how I got diabetes!! Sure would like to find another person here who has gone thru, and you Al know what I mean, what I have gone thru to get diabetes! I don't advertise it either. My family and extended family and some friends know about it but don't ask anything about it. One friend said to me when I was talking about it "oh I forgot about that about you"! Feel lost on an island with them :(

landdez 2012-10-12 17:53:48 -0500 Report

When I say that I am diabetic, many people give me an " I'm so sorry look". At first that made me feel so embarrassed. Thanks to sites like this one, I now know that I should not feel guilty anymore and that I should not hide my sickness. I am a very successful teacher and diabetes won't stop me from keep doing a great job as long as I take care of my myself !

Dr Gary
Dr GaryCA 2012-09-12 17:39:43 -0500 Report

Hey luked,

Just want to say that you have a really positive and empowered attitude. A great testimonial to the power of support, belonging to a really strong community like Diabetic Connect, sharing information, resources, care and concern.

Knowing you are not alone makes it easier to live -- and thrive -- with a chronic condition.


veggielover 2012-09-15 13:14:07 -0500 Report

Good for you,I don't hide my gray hair or my health problems either,what is important is who you are not what medical problems you have or don't have.

luked 2012-09-12 17:54:29 -0500 Report

Thanks Gary. An informed mind empowers others. Glad to be on board

Dr Gary
Dr GaryCA 2012-09-15 21:30:14 -0500 Report

Yes, and you are empowering others!

Gabbiex1 2012-09-19 12:53:50 -0500 Report

Me, too. It's just part of your daily routine so you have to treat it like a natural occurance. I'm Type II, Stage III CKD. I have a profound hearing loss, LOTS of arthritis, DVT…but if I want to go somewhere or do something…I'm going to try my darndest!! I'm not letting anything slow me down.

annie6556 2012-09-16 16:31:58 -0500 Report

I have run into discrimination in the past—only once though, but it did happen, and I wasn't hired because I was a diabetic, although I passed the physical. I was applying for a start up position, over 30 years ago, so hopefully, no one should run into this situation today hopefully. The pudding is providing proof of discrimination. I have never withheld my diabetes status.

Buver 2012-09-10 16:23:44 -0500 Report

I don't hide it. I don't announce it to everyone, either. My boss & co-workers know (just in case).

cottoncandybaby 2012-09-09 21:21:39 -0500 Report

Agree. No need to hide because a huge number of Americans have this disease now, unfortunately. Too many friends on here to feel like you have to hide it, that's what we're here for. Think how many people are out there that have it and don't even know it!

eristar 2012-09-09 05:57:17 -0500 Report

Definitely don't hide it, although I will admit that I am fortunate to live and work in an area where no one cares, and I have never had the misfortune to be criticized for it or had any uncalled for comments made. I noever realized just how lucky I was until I started reading some of the posts here on DC. Happy Sunday to everyone…:)

Type1Lou 2012-09-07 17:07:24 -0500 Report

I've never hidden my diabetes and it does not define who I am. Yes, I've had to change some behaviors and adapt to the condition but never felt diabetes impeded me in life. I was successful in my career and am fully enjoying an active retirement now. I grew up with a diabetic Dad and he provided a good role-model for me by not hiding his condition and dealing with it.

T1mama 2012-09-06 22:15:14 -0500 Report

I dont hide my diabetes at all. I wear a pump on my hip and and show it proudly. I dont like to try and hide it under my shirt because its like a bump on my hip and makes me look like I am oddly shaped lol I dont care who knows that i am diabetic. :-)

Ms. DAT 2012-09-07 19:32:00 -0500 Report

I have a friend who recently shared that they considering the pump and that same issue was addressed as to wear is will be worn.

Ms. DAT 2012-09-06 15:51:48 -0500 Report

Most people are shocked when I tell them that I am a Diabetic. The first thing they say is, "you don't look like on" I know how some look but I am not wanting to look sick to show I have Diabetes.
No I do not hide my diabetes because I have friends, family, co-workers, too who have Diabetes also.
When I go to have special services done such as hair, nails, skin …, then yes I let them know especially after I got an infection on a toe, boy was I nervous but it cleared up after excellent personal foot care and antibiotics.

When I work with clients yes I use discretion in disclosing my diabetes because it is not about me a that point. However I share a modest amount of personal experience if needed.

Confidentiality is still a high issue is our Society!!

If you are on Insulin- yes one should go to the restroom for injections but I know some who sit right at the table and give themselves that injections. Well after a while I will remove myself from being in public with them.

Well to each his/her own on how they choose hide or let the world now that I am a Diabetic.

GabbyPA 2012-09-07 14:18:10 -0500 Report

I love it when they say you don't look like one....What exactly does a diabetic LOOK like?? That always puzzled me.

Ms. DAT 2012-09-07 19:13:04 -0500 Report

I would ask the same thing!! Well I it was shared with me that most diabetics look sickly; real sleepy lookin, depressed lookin, stop taking good care of themselves, extremities removed, lack of energy, homebodies just to name a few responses. I could understand their responses because i have seen it myself. So I use me for an example to show that I don't have to look like a sickly diabetic even though I one for some years now.

It is true that many people are not really educated about the long term affects of diabetes. That's when it's a good opportunity to educate them about Diabetes and the care thereof and how they can help you or someone else,too.

Because I have always been an active person and one who keeps my upkeep sharp, however, I do experience some of these same feelings that they describe such as being real sleepy looking much in public, cause I have went plum to sleep when I sat too long on a city bus ride !!! So I do all I can to be alert when out in public and I take brief rest periods during the day so that I will not look warn out!

In times past people had traumatic experiences with family or friends that left a negative outlook on what we look like and how we should act on a daily basis.

However, because of research , education and new technology and innovations, Diabetic care as well as extended life span have improved since the 80's that include Type1 and Type 2, low blood sugar or high blood sugar.

In times past the older generation didn't know about the different types of diabetes they just called it "Shuga". I know, my Godmother is 95 years old and has asked me,"how is your Shuga?" I laugh and say, "it's OK" Yes I have used the new term for diabetes but I accept her for asking! Then she say, "you look tired, go take a nap"!! I did on several times!! LOL!!!

My Mama made that Old fashion pound cake with butter that melt as soon as it touches the palate I use to eat without restraint. Now I had to explain to her how that effect me and what signs and symptoms to look for.

luked 2012-09-07 16:33:34 -0500 Report

I know how u feel cuz I get the same responses. How should a diabetic act let alone look like

Just Joyce
Just Joyce 2012-09-05 18:46:37 -0500 Report

I don't hide being diabetic. All of my friends and family knows about it. This helps me because I am very active in my community so people in the community who I encounter at monthly meetings know I have it as do the Police Officers I am always working with on some project. It is nothing to be ashamed of because so many people have it.

Luke I am very active in my community so people have to know including the police officers I constantly work with. If something should happen they know what to do. The officers look out for me at events and meetings because they know I can get focused on something and forget to eat.

Personally I don't care who knows and people don't ask a lot of questions if they see me not eating at a meeting. When they ask I simply say I am diabetic and can't have the cookies or cake being served.

Discussing it isn't part of my everyday life. A woman in the supermarket the other day was nearly in tears. I asked her what was wrong and she said she was diagnosed the day before and was trying to find food she could eat. I told her to put all the white stuff back and get whole grains, fresh meat and veggies and showed her how to read labels. She hugged me. I also told her about this site and a few others. The last time I passed her she had put back the frozen dinners
bread, and jelly and had loaded up on her favorite meats and veggies. I told her to get food she could use as a snack between meals and she had string cheese, wheat crackers, nuts and sugar free pudding cups. She was a happy camper.

luked 2012-09-05 19:02:38 -0500 Report

I tell most everyone. I've learned so much, had so many common beliefs turned on their head, that I have an urge to plant seeds all over the place. So I indulge. Thus far, I think a few just might have sprouted …

GabbyPA 2012-09-05 10:52:25 -0500 Report

I share my diagnosis in conversation if it comes up. My husband shares it with every food server...sigh. He wants to make sure my tea is UNsweet. LOL.

I don't have a problem talking about it, but I guess I don't go out of my way to share. I DO share this site with nearly every diabetic I meet. This place is where I learned how to be a "good" diabetic. You are so right in saying that the support online is huge.

I have to say I have never felt the need to hide it though. That doesn't help anyone, especially me. I wear my diabetic medic alert bracelet 24/7. I test when I need to, and that is not always in the privacy of my home. I guess I just treat it as part of my everyday life. People around me can take it or leave it. But I know that when they are faced with a diabetic diagnosis, they will come to me and ask questions. So I'm good with that.

Just Joyce
Just Joyce 2012-09-05 18:54:13 -0500 Report

Gabby my sister does that. Make sure the tea is unsweetened before you order it. Sunday mornings we vend our jewelry at the Farmers Market Craft Bazaar. We overslept and woke up at 5 am. We have to be set up by 7am. I left my boiled eggs and cheese sticks in the fridge but grabbed my yogurt. The foods they sell are gourmet in sauce, fried or has items in the dish I am allergic to. By 8am, I was so lightheaded waiting for my sister to get back with something for me to eat. She brought me a lemon pastry. I ate half and was fine. By 11 I had to eat the other half. There is now a note on fridge that says Don't Forget Your Food.

MsEdith 2012-09-05 12:57:17 -0500 Report

I do share my diagnosis with other people and is really amazing how some individuals react..
I had been doing the Vegan diet … information was given by my Endocrinologist.. It is working for me… Other people come to me also with questions I am not a doctor… nicely turn them to chat with their MD..

jnblair 2012-09-05 13:14:32 -0500 Report

I share my diagnosis if it comes up and then i throw in all the ways that people can change their habits of eating and their everyday lifestyle to keeo from getting it also so to me a good conversation about my situation can benefit us both and help me cope with it Knowing i'm helping!!

jayabee52 2012-09-05 06:11:04 -0500 Report

Howdy Luke

My Dx was so long ago that it is integrated into my life. I do not go out of the way to tell the people I meet casually, but I do not hide it either. I DO however make it known to potential romantic partners just what are my "medical challenges". Previously I had tried to hide it to reveal it at the "proper time" but when I did that eventually the ladies pulled away after a time. Now I am up front about all of my medical issues (see my profile for a list) and I leave it to them to say whether it is a "deal breaker" for them. My current g/f SuzyQ was one who upon getting my list of "medical challenges" wrote in return "deal breakers not allowed". ( she had some challenges of her own).

So I do not wear my Dx "on my sleeve" as it were, but I do not hide it either.

James Baker