How we are treated in the community

By oldbuttercup Latest Reply 2011-02-17 20:25:47 -0600
Started 2011-02-13 08:27:46 -0600

In recent news there have been reports that when police officers arrest diabetics for traffic violations that the person they stop is treated as a DUI (a person under the influence). Even when the person is wearing identification and has insulin with them. The officers have thrown the insulin supplies on the ground, beat the person with there night sticks, kicked their faces and bodies, and sometimes even zapped them with tazers. When the person is locked up they have been denied their diabetic supplies and sometimes have wound up needing critical care because of diabetic complications. When some police departments have been cited for this, a spokesman for their department says their officers will receive sensitiy training. How about the person that is stopped in the first place receives medical treatment as soon as posible and is not denied their diabetic supplies?
Once a restaurant that my late type 1 wife and I went to refused to serve us when I asked for a glass of orange juice for her, because her sugar went low. I was told to get that drunk out of there before thy called the cops. We never went to eat there again. We made it across the strret, had the orange juice offered to us and enjoyed our meal.
Since my diagnosis some people have been mean to me and treated badly when my sugar has gone low. This happened at work more than once in the last year. Instead of asking me if I'm I am ok they have told me stop complaing or go home.
Have you or a family meber had bad experiences in the community, because of diabetes?

19 replies

Dr Gary
Dr GaryCA 2011-02-17 20:25:47 -0600 Report

This is an example of how fear and ignorance can lead to making assumptions which, in turn, lead to actions that are thoughtless and even harmful. Certainly an area where people need to be educated. But it also illustrates how people with disabilities of one type or another face not only the challenges of their condition but stigma from other people. Fortunately, encountering moments of compassion and understanding, and being part of a support community like Diabetic Connect, helps to provide balance and perspective. In spite of it all, the world has a lot of good in it.

Jameesa 2011-02-15 12:24:56 -0600 Report

Years ago in OHIO where I lived most of my life; my cousin was given a ticket for DUI his BG had dropped and he was extremely nauseous and a bit light-headed. Hopefully sensitivity training in the law enforcement world will make things easier when things happen out of our control…

GabbyPA 2011-02-15 22:18:14 -0600 Report

This is where a tattoo on our foreheads would come in handy...."I'm a Diabetic, not a drunk"

squog master
squog master 2011-02-15 01:04:32 -0600 Report

So far I have been fortunate not to encounter problem like these. For one reason I worked in the school system & plenty of kids have diabetes so people are educated & simpathetic toward our problems. Also fortunately I have never gone low enough to appear intoxicated. I have not had a problem getting OJ in any restaurant. My problem is sometimes low potassium & after explaining that it has always been brouht immeadiately. I count myself very fortunate to not have had to endure some of the problems many of my friends here at DC have had to put up with.

CaliKo 2011-02-14 14:37:46 -0600 Report

I'm so sorry you and your type 1 wife had that experience in the restaurant, and also that you have insensitive people at work. I haven't had any of these experiences yet, just a few ignorant remarks. I also think most policemen are better than this example, but it does happen and it's unfortunate the profession does attract the wrong kind of personalities sometimes. I think education is the answer.

oldbuttercup 2011-02-15 06:57:48 -0600 Report

I agree with you about most policeman. The stories mentioned are isolated incidents throughout the country over a period of years. These are the stories that stick out in our memory, not the ones where the policeman were helpful, compassionate, or knowledgeable.
As for the restaurant incident, I also agree education is the best answer.
As Always May God Bless You

GabbyPA 2011-02-13 22:18:14 -0600 Report

Stories like this make my blood boil. I know that the police and the general public don't have to know everything, but there has to be some kind of awareness made. I know of at least on member here who was treated as a drunk when her sugar was low. Her story is horrible. In fact, she was the first one I had heard of this happening. It never occurred to me before that. Now, when I watch the news, I always wonder.

Not that I give the cops any slack, but in a restaurant, that is inexcusable when there is a coherent person with them. I would return to that establishment and speak with the manager and explain what happened. It may not help you, but it could save another person's life. You might even offer to do the training class for the staff so they are aware. This is the only way we will stop the ignorance.

oldbuttercup 2011-02-14 08:21:51 -0600 Report

The restaurant incident happened over 20 years ago, but I have never forgotten it. I have since moved out of N.Y.C., been diganosed with type 2 diabetes, and married another very special woman who is both wonderful and supportive. In fact she is the one who looks out for me in all puplic situations. She would never have tolerated the way my late wife was treated.
As Always May God Bless You

Rainerm 2011-02-13 18:51:58 -0600 Report

I have never had an issue with how people treat me because of my diabetes. My husband was once pulled over while rushing me to the hospital because of a diabetic problem, and the officer was completely sympathetic. He made sure we knew where we were going and told us to drive safe.
I have had issues with the amount of supplies that I have to take into crowded places, such as football games. I used to be able to bring a doctors note, but now I have to limit what I bring.

oldbuttercup 2011-02-14 08:26:37 -0600 Report

I am so glad to hear you and your husband ran into a sympathetic police officer. Other officers can certainly benifit from his example.
As for the amount of supplies you can bring with you to crowded places that is Outrageous. There are plenty of more pressing issues to worry about than if a diabetic is carrying to much supplies with them.
As Always May God Bless You.

realsis77 2011-02-13 11:06:06 -0600 Report

Wow those stories are awful! And all they did was give the officer "sensitivity" training? That's truely awful! And to tell you to get the "drunk" out of there resturant, wow you handled it waaay better than I would have! I think I would have blown up or told the news how that resturant treats people with a disease! Gosh that's soo awful. I've had some seriously negative reactions but mostly reguarding my shots I have to take. I was told gosh id rather be dead than have to give myself shots! That comment was from my own nephew. It really hurt my feelings. Some people can be so ignorant and insensitive! Your work sounds like my old job where they have no concern for us just themselfs! I was forced to work through lunch and id get sick often not being allowed to break when I needed to! Not only was this illegal but its immoral how they treat us! I'm so glad I no longer work for that jerk anymore! I wish I had a solution to this treatment but I don't it. Continues to happen everyday! It makes me soo angry to be treated as a second class citizen! This post really hits home for me and I feel something needs to be done about this! People need to be educated about diabetes but even then you will still have insensitive jerks out there who are going to treat us badly. I'm so sorry you have to go through these kinds of things. No one deserves that. I wish you the very best and God bless!

oldbuttercup 2011-02-14 13:55:50 -0600 Report

My late wife's baby sister made the same comment that your nephew made regarding shots. to this date she is not diabetic, but one never knows do one? Since my wife's passing at age 36, another sister passed at 51 from diabetic complications. The little one is now 48. Even with 2 sisters with diabetes she has yet to be sensitive to diabetic issues.
As for your previous job, I am glad that you are no longer employed there.
I wish you the very best also.
As Always May God Bless You

Harlen 2011-02-13 10:00:09 -0600 Report

No one would dare try that with me lol lol lol
I am so nice and frendly but if treated bad I will rip off an arm and beat them over the head with it lol lol lol I have lived all over the world and never had any problems I play poker all over andI fined that people treat me a little better when they know I have diabetis. I think in this day and time people are better educated now then in the past. Or the fact that I am 6ft 350 lbs ????
Or it may be just the way I carry my self ???
Best wishes

oldbuttercup 2011-02-14 14:08:47 -0600 Report

Your agressive personality sounds like that of my 24 year old son.
In fact I have a 32 year old son who is even bigger than I am (Ralph Kramden had a friend Shirley bigger than the guy using the pool table). My 32 year old is 6' 5". Are you sure all you incensitive people out there that you want to take on our family now?
Never mind the men or the dog in our family, Beware the wife. She will eat all you disrespectful people alive!
No not the people here at dibetic Connect, You guys are great.
As always May God Bless You
PS it is the way you carry yourself, my wife is only 5" 4"

dietcherry 2011-02-13 11:39:04 -0600 Report

Yes Harlan I agree-I have often received preferential treatment when I inform people that I am diabetic. I have been knee-deep at a restaurant bar waiting for a table and have had to break in line and ask for an ounce or 2 of fruit juice because my sugar was dropping and they have always been "johnny-on-the-spot" with it (and have not once charged me for it). I feel blessed to have had these understanding angels in my midst when Ive needed them most!!!

Harlen 2011-02-13 12:10:59 -0600 Report

Times have changed I think every one knows someone that is diabetic.
I hope it will even get better.

MAYS 2011-02-13 08:53:43 -0600 Report

To date, I have not.
I prefer to educate others about the importance of managing their diabetes, and diabetes awareness, which can be a task at times!

All you can do as a diabetic is to remain positive, manage your diabetes, and fight for your rights.
The key to it all is this, you must document your disease, treatment, and carry on your person at all times the necessary tools (emergency medical i.d., glucose meter, insulin, etc.) which would further document such on your behalf.

If your state has an i.d. system that states that you are a diabetic on your drivers license, or personal i.d. utilize this feature for your benefit.
Know your rights as a diabetic, do not let anyone take those rights away from you.


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