Diabetes versus Diabetic

By markjohn1 Latest Reply 2017-02-24 14:36:03 -0600
Started 2009-05-18 14:10:25 -0500

First off, Tom stay out of this!

I want everyone else to do some serious and soul searching thinking about this statement before rendering an answer.

I am planning on a speaking/debating tour with a fellow diabetic about this issue and we will be starting in the colleges and then moving around the country speaking/debating this comparison.

We are arranging thoughts on our own now and I just thought I would put this out there for some ideas from all of my family here at Diabetic Connect.

All of your thoughts are greatly appreciated and I look forward to your thoughts and comments/


I will be responding to all of your answers one at a time with my thoughts and would really like you to be totally honest in your replies to my answers also. No matter how upset I make you. LOL


24 replies

Stuart1966 2017-02-24 14:36:03 -0600 Report

A distinction without any value for me.
I do not "have" diabetic, I am one. I am not "diabetes" I have it.

Antique-Dave 2009-05-21 09:42:44 -0500 Report

it strikes me as a non issue, politically correct nonsense but thats just me.

DaveTheCompGuy 2009-05-29 19:39:05 -0500 Report

(another Dave weighs in…)

Personally, it does make a difference. I remember seeing the wallet cards that said "I AM DIABETIC" in big letters - then seeing some that now say "I HAVE DIABETES". Guess which one I carry?

I am not this disease. I am a person *with* this disease. While it doesn't have a cure now, it may come soon (check out the Edmonton protocol - and guess where I'm from!). Calling me a diabetic is only another way to label me - like calling me white, or fat, or old. If we let them 'round us up' in that way, it's not long before they make the decisions for us, 'for our safety'.

Bluebutterfly 2009-05-30 10:20:36 -0500 Report

I totally agree with you on this.I would like to add that we don't need to fit in a circle. we all have our own opinion as our live are different but the same in some respects. I am a real person with dibetes.When I speak to someone else i say I have diabetes not that I am diabetic.I guess it really doesn't really matter when it comes down to it.

John Crowley
John Crowley 2009-05-20 09:37:19 -0500 Report

So I don't feel very strongly about this issue. But I have definitely met people who are very passionate on this issue. And without exception those who I've met in the past feel that they don't want to be "labeled" as a diabetic. They feel that using the term diabetic is like defining your whole life by your disease. They prefer "person with diabetes" and you'll even see PWD as an abbreviation on some message boards.

I'm not saying I feel that way. But I will say that after my son was diagnosed, my wife and I made a conscious effort to ensure that we didn't allow the disease to become the only thing people knew about our son. Or even the first thing they knew about him. "Hi, this is our son, THE diabetic." You know. We wanted it to simply be a part of him not the only part.

So for me, the bottom line is I don't feel strongly about either term, diabetes or diabetic.

markjohn1 2009-05-19 14:48:36 -0500 Report

As I am waiting to see more comments before I do some serious writing about this, I thought I would help the discussion along with this point that I add when speaking to friends about diabetes vs diabetic.

There is a picture I have of the DNA of Diabetes. I cannot inset it here but let me describe it a little. It is a picture of a bunch of colored round balls, you know the kind, they almost look like M&M's regular, not peanut shaped. They are sort of hanging in mid-air. To me that is what many Doctors see when you walk through their door. The DNA of Diabetes. So to me when I hear diabetes or I have diabetes or I live with diabetes, I think of that picture of DNA> I look in the mirror and I know I don't look like that. I know I haven't slept with the DNA since Patti my wife doesn't look like that. I know that I look like Mark, the picture portrayed here in the thumbnail. I look like the guy I see each and every morning, not the hanging DNA picture of M&M's.

So that's what made me start thinking I would rather be called diabetic more so than having diabetes.


The there is the issue of IC at the end of diabetIC. That kind of sounds negative. diabetIC. It seems to stand out really loud when someone say's Mark is a diabetIC. So there is that also.


I believe I can…

You'll have to wait for the answer till I get more comments and write my opinion and answers to everyone here.


LadyDi - 26259Miller
LadyDi - 26259Miller 2009-05-19 17:38:19 -0500 Report

Everyone feels differently, I'm sure. Maybe I'm just too laid back - perhaps it's my Lexapro (LOL). I just don't see what the heck difference it makes. Seems to me there's way too much to worry about anyway in most of our lives. Why spend time letting something like this bother you? Guess I'm just not getting it.

Anonymous 2009-05-19 23:47:04 -0500 Report

I do not intend what I am about to say to be rude, but I want to share what an attorney advised me one time when I was obsessing (out loud) about something. "Don't overthink it", the attorney told me. That succint comment got my attention, provided me with some perspective; I let go of the obsessive thoughts and boy, did I feel better! The diabetic vs diabetes just strikes me as overthinking. So from this comment take what you like and leave the rest, but please don't take offense.

LadyDi - 26259Miller
LadyDi - 26259Miller 2009-05-20 00:13:31 -0500 Report

I agree. Just seems like a waste of time and energy to worry about something like this. For me, anyway. But everyone is entitled to their views, of course.

Dancehawk 2009-05-30 11:23:26 -0500 Report

I can understand A bit more of the subject by this post hehe!
The IC on the end.
About how we are seen I know from my doctors visits she see's me as me, a person who needs help and at the same time is no different then her.
We talk,about personal stuff, life her mom who is a missionary in Japan and is a type 2, how things are different over there and how she keeps it under control.
I have had doctors that will not look at me in my eye nor treat me like I am human but they treat me like a number.
Now those type I normally will not go back to but if I do have to I sit them down and we have a very long talk about bed side manners and I am a person who needs a partner insolving why I am sick or having trouble in my body.
I had one tell me he was sorry another tell me he has never been able to look into a patiant because he found by removing himself from the human emmotions of contact it does not hurt as bad when they die.We talked at great lengths and found out he had lost one that he really cared for in and out of medical realm.
And some times you meet a doctor who thinks he is god .. ohh my those guys have the hardest path to walk I feel sorry for them when there pedistol tips.
They are better at plastic surgery then caring hehehe just my 2 cents lol!

This is a very good subject and I am enjoying the conversations.

I am in the process of writing a book its a werewolf vampire one and my last visit to my eye doctor ( he crakes me up he asked if I could do a book on killing a staff at a eye clinic) lol!
I asked him where do you want me to start we laughed. great doctor!

Dietbeeties 2009-05-19 07:55:12 -0500 Report

I do label myself as a diabetic, sometimes even get obsessive about my daily routine and making sure everything is perfect (I have been working on that since joining the site and finding out there really is no perfect). I am a little confused about the topic though. Diabetes and Diabetic are kind of two different things, one is a disease, the other is the person with the disease. I don't take offense to either term. My friends and family all know, and help and support me, they all try to come up with recipes for me and always include me in everything. I don't feel I have been treated different because of the terms diabetic or diabetes, I get judged more about treatment that some don't understand, ignorance on this subject bothers me. Don't know if this was the input you are looking for…I'll keep watching this discussion to see if I can get more clear on what opinions you are wanting to hear..good or bad.

lipsie 2009-05-19 04:33:47 -0500 Report

I agree that I am just me, but I dunno Diabetes to me is the disease itself and I am a Diabetic and that is the just term used. I dunno I don't see a huge difference I guess. Maybe you can enlighten me on this and change my thoughts? Thanks ya all! Love yaaaas Sheila

2009-05-18 22:16:11 -0500 Report

Diabetes is a disease that I have and others refer to me as a Diabetic. I don't refer to myself that way. I am Judy, I am me, I am funny, I am tall, I am a redhead, I have green eyes, I am a Mom, a daughter, a hard worker, and many other things and I also have Diabetes. Many things in my life describe me not just the disease that I have that is not visible to the naked eye. I'd rather be known for my sense of humor or my compassion than for a disease that makes me eat healthy and exercise. If I meet a stranger on the street they don't know I have Diabetes, they only see the red hair, the green eyes and the smile and they make their judgements about me according to my actions or words not according to a disease that I have. BUT once they find out I have this wonderful disease, I am labeled for life. The diabetic that can't have treats and is left out of get togethers because they will be having cake or donuts. I'd rather be Judy, that fun woman that is the life of the party and doesn't eat sweets because she doesn't care for them. I never thought in all my life I would keep something a secret but this I do. It's on a need to know basis!!! I wear a medical id for professionals to know this but for the general public NO.


LadyDi - 26259Miller
LadyDi - 26259Miller 2009-05-18 22:30:51 -0500 Report

I guess that just has never been the case for me. No one treats me the least bit different. They know I have it, but it's just never part of a conversation, etc. I certainly do not "label" myself a diabetic, and I don't feel any of my family or friends do either. I am an individual, etc, just as you expressed, but, realistically, being a diabetic is also part of who I am as well. I don't think that should really have a bearing on how people think of you or treat you. I don't just go around announcing it or bringing it up out of the blue, and only people who know me well are aware, of course. I guess I'm fortunate that it has just never been a big deal to me. For that matter, it seems most of the people I know are diabetic these days. A great percentage, anyway.

Dietbeeties 2009-05-19 07:48:25 -0500 Report

Just have to say, in 1st grade (lol) I had a best friend with green eyes and red hair, and ever since then I have adored women with such luck, I just think its such a beautiful combination!! Lucky you! *I have even dyed my hair red on occasion but it never looks natural :( sorry, off topic..

Sarguillo 2009-05-18 16:04:55 -0500 Report

I think of this as a desease and an adjective. I am a diabetic, I have diabetes. But I dont let that control my life. I am more than just a diabetic.
I am a husband, a son, A brother, A friend, a gamer, a reader, A lover of animals. Diabetes is only a portion of my life. it does not control all I do. IN fact, there are times I forget I am diabetic and just live my life. Then it cames time to eat and I have to remember that I am diabetic.

I am Man, Hear me Roar, I pay my taxes, Therefore I am.
I am also a diabetic.

Good luck with your project. Either way.

LadyDi - 26259Miller
LadyDi - 26259Miller 2009-05-18 17:46:51 -0500 Report

I'll be interested to see what surfaces in this discussion, as I really do not see that there is much to "discuss", or what the big issue is. Either way we have a disease known as diabetes. We are diabetic. I don't see that as anything derogatory, etc., just a medical diagnosis. I know people like to make the point that diabetes does not "have them", rather they have diabetes. To me we're just splitting hairs or knitpicking. Diabetes does, in deed, "have" us, in my opinion. But what matters is that we accept it and make a conscious decision to continue our lives to the fullest extent possible by doing all that we are able to do to manage/control it. As I said, I'll be interested in the responses you get, and in your assessment of my take on it.

Dancehawk 2009-05-18 15:35:40 -0500 Report

Negitive verses postive yes I am a diabetic but diabetes does not have me.

It is like the statement when you are walking in a desert as far as you can go and you come to a brick wall thats as high as you can climb, deep as you can dig to the left and right as far as you can go what do you do?

Ones that say turn around and go back are ones that avoid life.

Ones that try to climb over , dig or go around avoid things or put them off as long as they can.

Those that say go through the wall are the folks that say yep I have but it does not have me.
We are the face on, look at solutions and help others through the hole in the wall we punched through.
This site is the hole in the wall and each of us here are helping each other.

Huggles would love to converse with you on the subject, smiles!


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