Diabetes Awareness

By markjohn1 Latest Reply 2009-03-21 14:45:17 -0500
Started 2009-03-19 15:49:30 -0500

So today on my radio show I talked about the diabetes awareness and the lack of it.

Think about this and let me know if I am wrong. I spend a great amount of time going to the Pharmacy weekly and what I keep seeing is a lack of diabetes awareness. I find the diabetic supplies towards the back of the Pharmacy, near the drug counter, back-row towards the rear isle that most people tend to stray from. Now for diabetics we know where to go. It also happens to be across from the foot supplies which I kind of like since we should as diabetics take care of our feet. Still though they are not right up in front for the eyes to see. I am not talking about for us to see though. I want the people who don't have diabetes, who are suppose to be made aware of this disease to see what we go through. The kids of supplies we need daily to wake them up.

When you reach the front of the store where all the magazines are and the greasy slime papers, as I call them are, but good for stories, do you ever see a story about diabetes? The other day I saw the story about Patrick Swayze dying of cancer. Everyone else dying from this and that and some people picked up by aliens, but nothing about diabetes. You can read about Big Ed McMahon who is in the hospital or Jerry Lewis on steroids, but nothing about who has diabetes. What celebrity, beside Nick Jonas has diabetes on the front page. Nothing about amputees, even though 200 happen a day. nothing about someone dying from complications from diabetes even though 600 die daily.

So where is the awareness that everyone is talking about. We as diabetics look for diabetic things when we enter a store out of habit and being interested in new products. Others don't care. There are no signs at the counter that say take this diabetic magazine it's free. They are just laying on the counter, grab one if you want. Nothing there to tell you anything.

why not put good ole Wiford out there as a cardboard stand-up in his western hat pointing out the supplies? Why not put a picture of Nick Jonas over the supplies or at the counter to reinforce awareness of diabetes? Why not have Wilford as a talking machine like I have seen other machines at the drug stores. I walk by one spot in the isle and this machine starts to talk to me about question I may have and it may be bale to answer them. Why not have a machine like that for diabetes? That's awareness to me.

Why do they hide everything? That's why so many diabetics are still scared to come out and admit they are diabetic. I can't blame them when in the 21st century we still hide this disease. What is it, are they afraid of it or us? Are they afraid we will infect others? Come on we all know diabetes isn't contagious, or do we? How many people or kids don't know that? I had a kid recently ask me if he hugged me would he catch diabetes? Wow. I was shocked. This was a kid in the 7th grade. What are they teaching these kids in school? So much for awareness.

So I say it is time to make awareness a national issue by us. No one else will do it so why not the community? Why shouldn't we who really and truly care about us and other make a case for awareness? I am tired of going to the back isles of stores like I am a diseased person. Take our stuff and put i right out there in front. What are they afraid of? Let people ask questions. Let kids ask their parents what is that? What is diabetes? Can I get it? Let the kids see and ask for they are our future.

Let me know what you think. This discussion is far from over for me.

11 replies

GabbyPA 2009-03-21 14:45:17 -0500 Report

Ok, well...we have to be fair. What do you know about AIDS? I know a lot, I have friends who have it and friends who I have lost to it.
Ok, well...what about Chrones? Do you see the unbearable pain they suffer just for eating? I do...and it is alarming.
Ok, well....how about autisim? What do you really know about the internal strife of that individual? Of the inablity to express what is really happening inside.
Ok, well...have you ever been blind? As a kid I wanted to know. Inspired by a classmate, I spent a weekend blind, 24/7. Not to make fun of him, but to gain empathy for him. I learned, and he taught.
Shall I go on? How about the deaf. I know sign language, but more so, I know the culture of the deaf....do you?

I say all this just to say that while diabetes is a misunderstood disease, it is not alone. Until people actually have something touch their lives, they just plod on thru life. I cannot fault them for that. Just like I cannot fault you for not being aware of many other diseases. I don't fault myself for not knowing things about a lot of things.

That is why we ask questions. It shouldn't hurt our feelings if someone asks if they can "catch" diabetes. We should see it as an opportunity to educate and enlighten.

Stock boys and retail marketers don't care where they put an item based on what disease it represents. Some products will always be at the back of the store...why does it matter? If we let it become a stigma, what would you expect the general public to make it to be?

roshy 2009-03-19 19:43:17 -0500 Report

a magazine about diabetes for children and teens would benefit kids of all ages!! helping them by sharing advice tips and stories eliminates the feeling of being alone of even outcasts at times!! as a young person it can get very lonely and isolated!! if i was given a mag at a young age i know i would benefit from it in many different ways.

markjohn1 2009-03-19 20:21:30 -0500 Report

Thank you. I agree. There is one out but it only comes out 4 times a year. I have been looking into a monthly magazine for kids electronically. Don't know if it will work but I am looking into it.

roshy 2009-03-19 20:32:06 -0500 Report

four times a year!! thats very petty!! and all the kids that are diagnosed and that are being diagnosed daily with this condition???the amount of support for these children is way too little. No wonder they shy away!! there is no awareness out there at all and the people who are suffering are the diabettys of the world.

In my community there are so many support groups for cancer sufferers, drug users, travellors, alcohol sufferers but not even a mention of support groups of teens. children or adults with diabetes!! which all the new knowledge and research there should be a step forward with support and awareness; but there isnt!! WHY IS THIS??

markjohn1 2009-03-19 20:52:09 -0500 Report

That is the same all over. I have been trying to get a support group going here in Fresno so people have a place to talk and people that they can call when they need too. It is hard to get going and then to get the word out around the nation. I figure if I can set up a model here for others to follow we can start our-reach program all over the US with the help of other diabetics that believe like you and I do .

2009-03-19 22:37:48 -0500 Report

I live in Wisconsin and we have support groups for Diabetes here. I've attended a few and to be honest, they are an old folks get out of the house event. The young ones (including myself at 51… LOL) come once or twice and then don't bother because it's designed for the 65+ group and they talk about things at that level. I don't know how to get it going here either so that there is a kids and teens event or a young adults group or even a 50 and below group.. to some 50 might seem old but to me I don't fit in with the old grannies just yet LOL

markjohn1 2009-03-19 22:53:17 -0500 Report

If you are really interested in getting it going there then let me help you even though I am in California. I would really enjoy working on this with you and others if you want. Let me know.

firefightermom 2009-03-19 19:07:00 -0500 Report

you are right. There is definitly a lack of knowledge in the school and community. Kids ask my daughter all the time can they get IT?? she handles it well but still hurts her feelings.

markjohn1 2009-03-19 19:09:49 -0500 Report

This is exactly what I am talking about with awareness. If there were more displays in the stores where kids go and even adults they would be more likely to ask questions and want answers. Then they would be in the know about diabetes and know more and what to say.

DonnaAnn 2009-03-19 17:26:30 -0500 Report

In the magazine rack, some do carry diabetic living.

markjohn1 2009-03-19 18:27:40 -0500 Report

Some do. How many though? I know I picked on magazines but also I am looking at the display of merchandise and how it is hidden. I just think there cold be better awareness by display and with that come questions and answers. I do applaud the stores that display the magazines and give them lots of credit.