Welcome to Day Three of Diabetes Blog Week. If you have signed up to participate, please check the Participant’s List to make sure I’ve added your name and linked your blog correctly. I try my hardest but the chances are slim that I didn’t mess up an entry or two - especially since we are up to 125 participants as of right now. So please email me if your listing needs to be corrected and accept my apology for the error. Also if you are blogging along with DBlogWeek but haven’t officially signed up yet, please do so here so I can add you to the participant’s list. The list will remain available well after Diabetes Blog Week is over so I’d love to include your blog on this Blog Roll of sorts.
Our topic today is Language and Diabetes. There is an old saying that states “Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me”. I'm willing to bet we've all disagreed with this at some point, and especially when it comes to diabetes. Many advocate for the importance of using non-stigmatizing, inclusive and non-judgmental language when speaking about or to people with diabetes. For some, they don't care, others care passionately. Where do you stand when it comes to “person with diabetes” versus “diabetic”, or “checking” blood sugar versus “testing”, or any of the tons of other examples? Let's explore the power of words, but please remember to keep things respectful.
Words are so important. Words can hurt so badly. I’ve been accused of being “too sensitive” and maybe it’s true. But I take perceived judgements and criticisms to heart. I’ve cried more than once over things said to or about me - both on-line and off.
With that in mind, I try really really hard never to do that to anyone else. (And if I have even written or said anything that has hurt you, I am very sorry.) I try really hard not to ever say or write anything that might sound critical or judgmental. I try to choose my words carefully, even in the smallest of ways. For example, I don’t mind being called a diabetic, but since I know some people do, I try to always say person with diabetes instead. I no longer test my blood sugar, but instead I check it so others won’t feel like it’s something they can pass or fail (even though saying test would be okay with me). I don’t care if you eat low carb or a billion carbs, if it works for you, who am I to criticize.
I guess what I’m really trying to say is this: In the DOC, and in life in general, I wish we could all try to be a little kinder to each other. People need to realize the power of their words.
Ready to read more perspectives on Language and Diabetes? Click here for a list of posts.
What is Diabetes Blog Week? Click here for an explanation and to sign up. You can also check out the Participant’s List here.