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Friend or Foe

“Cool!  I have a friend who is diabetic and he’s doing great!”

This is what I heard the other day from a young man, who saw me using my OmniPod. We conversed for a short time about diabetes (good stuff, not bad) and we went on our separate ways. I am always enthusiastic when I hear fellow diabetics striving to do their best. However, I can’t say the same for everyone.

I recently read this post by David Edelman: “Which is Worse: Type 1 or Type 2 Diabetes?“

I read the blog and subsequent comments.  Sadly, many of the negative, sometimes “hate-filled”, replies didn’t surprise me. Many, many years ago, I probably would’ve replied the same way. BUT…my eyes have been opened to realize that diabetes is becoming more and more meshed together. Now before some of you care to argue whether type 1′s or type 2′s have it worse, consider this line of thought…

With cancer, we see several different forms, e.g. liver cancer, leukemia, breast, colon, etc.  The list goes on. While not comparing diabetes to cancer, diabetes affects the pancreas directly and indirectly other organs (different topic altogether). Okay, stay with me now. Diabetics, whether a type 1 or type 2 diagnosis, face the challenge of a pancreas that is not doing it’s job. Has the pancreas stopped working? No, it hasn’t. Has it stopped producing insulin cells? Maybe.

So, why all the argument and anger between the two (and possibly 3) types of diabetes? Frankly, I don’t know anymore. I see both type 1′s and 2′s every day, as either co-workers or family, and can’t say I have any anger towards the difference. Throw LADA’s (or type 1.5′s) in the mix and the mesh of diabetes becomes more entwined. I do know this much: the anger and bitterness between type 1′s and 2′s needs to stop. No one ever asked for this disease; no one ever asks for any chronic and/or terminal illness. We must put aside our differences and help each other.

And if you’re not helping others who have type 1, type 2, or LADA diabetes, then why not?

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