Category Archives: diabetes disclosure

Are you sure we are related?

Some days I wonder if my son and I are really related. The other day he came home and said “Guess what? I met a guy today who is 21 years old and has type 1 diabetes.” 

I thought that was pretty cool. My son told me his name as if I should know him. I had no clue as to who he was.  My son informed me that he was a local actor.  I guess I am supposed to know all people with diabetes especially those who are pursuing an acting career.  Why? Because I am his mother of course!

The conversation continued…How did you know that he had diabetes?

“Well I saw tubing.”

Cool! Did you show him your tubing?

“No”

Larry asked how he knew that the tubing was attached to a pump.

“Because I could see it attached to the side of his pants.”

Cool! What kind of pump did he have? A Medtronic? That seems popular around here.

“I don’t know.”

Did you show him your pump? Did you flash your tubing and give him the “thumbs up”?

“No.”

Did you start a conversation? Ask him when he was diagnosed? Compare meters? Ask him when the last time he tested was?

“No.”

Did he ask about your pump? Did he say “Hey! You’ve got a pump too!”

“No.  He couldn’t see my pump or my tubing. My pump was under my shirt attached to my pants and my hoodie was pulled down over them both.  He had no idea.”

Larry and I just looked at each other. Larry told him that he should have spoken with him.  I told him, he’s part of your club.  You both have diabetes. That’s special.

My son looked at my like I was crazy.  He had seen another person with Type 1.  The guy was teaching them something about theatre in his English class.  My son noticed that he had a pump.  Wasn’t that enough?

I guess for him it was.  I am way more obnoxious.  You know I would have asked what kind of pump he was using, how long he had been pumping? What age he was diagnosed and so on. I like to talk to these people. I like to learn.  I like to engage people who live like we do.  My son is happy to watch from the sidelines, comment and move on.  One disease and such vastly different approaches.

The next day my son came home and told me that he had seen the guy again.  He was back teaching in his English class.

“Did you talk to him about diabetes this time?”
“Nope.”

Oh my.  I guess I will just be happy that he notices things and when he is ready to share, he will. In the meantime, I will continue to be the voice in the family.