I read two posts today about disclosing your diabetes/disease. (There might be more than two – I only read two…) Do you or don’t you? (And as an aside, I do get rid of the gray on a regular basis.)

Heidi is in nursing school and the instructor asked the class if any of them have diabetes. The reason given by the instructor was that a student with diabetes may be able to help other students understand diabetes better. I’d be curious if the instructor is going to ask this question about each and every disease that they study.  Personally, I thought that was quite unnecessary.

Kerri posted an article on fb from WEGOhealth – Do You Disclose?

The first month after my diagnosis, a parishioner gave me a delightful box of chocolates. Someone else in our office decided to tell the gifter that I wouldn’t be able to enjoy it as I had just been diagnosed with d. I wasn’t a happy camper and let the discloser know (later) that it was not his place to tell others of my diagnosis. He was very apologetic and never did it again. He was also my boss. Oh well.

I have told people that I have diabetes. They’ve told other people. It’s okay, until they start policing me and then – well, then they get a diabetes lesson. One time, it was a large group of women, all of whom gasped when I looked like I was going to take a piece of cake. They made me mad enough that I ate the stupid piece of cake just to prove my point and explain their lesson. I didn’t want the piece of cake but felt like (stupidly) I had to prove my point. I was not happy. BUT – it turned out nicely as later that week an older parishioner came to me with her new meter and her new diagnosis of Type 2. She couldn’t figure out how to use the meter. So my feelings were changed as I helped someone else, and I figured it didn’t hurt me to share my diagnosis with friends. I’ve written about her before and I’m happy to say that she’s doing great! Weight loss, exercise and her numbers are just fine. Turns out she was a very good friend of my godmother in Massachusetts, years ago. Who’d have thunk? And she crochets pot-holders. Boy, do we have a lot of pot-holders!

It’s still my choice when to tell and when to keep my mouth shut. It should always be our choice.

Many long years ago, when attending a PTA meeting, one of the parents who walked in with me, had parked in the handicapped parking spot. I casually mentioned as we walked into the school together, “Gee, I don’t know if you realized it, but you’re parked in the handicapped spot.” She was very nice, not angry, and calmly told me that she had MS and so she parked there. Of course, I quickly apologized and wished I’d kept my mouth shut. You never know…

6 thoughts on “Telling

  1. Good point…with your last paragraph. We never know what others are struggling with. AND…I love that you said/wrote “thunk”!

    I feel for Joe b/c not disclosing is NOT an option at this point. However, I feel that it is important that others know, so that they can perhaps help out with a low etc…

  2. Good post. I think we just have to come from a place of respect for other people and their visible/hidden challenges in life.

  3. You are right! You do never know. Especially now when jobs are so hard to come by. It is so important to keep our mouths shut and let others disclose what they want to disclose.

    Great post!

  4. Disclosure has its upsides and downsides…
    but someone should never be “forced” to tell.
    I've told lots of people(and not told an equally
    large number),it just all depends. Great Post.

    And thanks for reposting me! (I'm flattered to be in
    the same post as Kerri…I'm not a blogging great!lol)

  5. When I was looking for my first job out of college, the Americans with Disabilities Act had not yet happened. Discrimination was rampant. So I kept the db a secret.
    Today I disclose only if if comes up in conversation. I don't go broadcasting it around.

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