Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Watch Your Language!

How many times have you heard that from your parents? :-)

#DBlogWeek Day 3 Prompt:
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.

I have a slightly different take on the "PWD vs Diabetic" conversation. I was diagnosed back in 1971-ish range. The term "Diabetic" was generally used at that time - no one thought anything of it. Now we're in the 21st century and people are, as Heather Gabel pointed out, using "Person-first" language. Example - People with Diabetes, rather than Diabetic. I know a number of people who are varying levels of vehemently against terms like Diabetic in that it identifies a person as a disease or implies a close relation. I do my best when around multiple people who share my condition to fall on the most polite of courses, namely "PWD" or Person with Diabetes.

Now, for myself, I've really never thought of Diabetes as a disease. I mean, according to all the dictionaries I bothered to look at just now, it is indeed a disease, but I've always thought of it as a condition. I think of disease as something you catch, whether from people, insect, plant or food, is treatable and it ends eventually, via health or death. Well, we all do die eventually, right?

I like to think of it as - something happened and now my pancreas doesn't work right. I can take it out and replace it (I KNOW it's not that easy!) or I can react to the lack of insulin production. A chair with three legs has a condition known as "unbalanced" (much like me, but that's another tale). I have a condition known as "broken pancreas" and therefore I am a Diabetic - which really means "with close relation to Diabetes" or some such. The -ic ending defines us all... I own this term and am proud of my progress in controlling my condition and in sharing my thoughts, as evidenced in this blog.

On the -ic thought...

I am not only Diabetic...

     I am Dramatic (ask my husband)...

          I am Emphatic...

               I am somewhat neurotic...

                    And - I am Ecstatic that you came to read my blog!!

Love and Hugs!

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