Ideal Diabetes Support Group

The topic for the April DSMA Blog Carnival is, “Describe your ideal diabetes “support group”? What would you discuss?”

For me, the DOC has been the ideal support group.  Back in 1984 when I was first diagnosed, I did go to a bunch of local support group meetings.  I guess for the time they were OK, but they pale in comparison to what the DOC is like.  The groups were led by an educator and there was no YMMV.  We didn’t have the insulin that we have today and snacking was important to try and prevent lows.  We used the old exchange list and things like glycemic index didn’t really come into play.

One conversation that particularly stood out for me was a guy that had to drive a lot for his job.  He asked about what kind of snack he could have that he could eat while driving.  He said he wasn’t generally hungry but knew he had to eat or his blood sugar would go low.  At the time, I had a very hectic job and I would take snacks to work that I could eat very easily without having to stop working to munch on an apple before it turned brown.  I used to buy the small boxes of raisins to take to work.  Before I get blasted, we used the exchange list back then and didn’t worry about stuff like spikes after meals!  I suggested raisins to the guy and the educator leading the group immediately squashed that idea.  The reason she didn’t like it?  Because a small box of raisins was not very filling.  The guy said that he wasn’t hungry so if you aren’t hungry, why does it matter if it is filling or not?

Diabetes is not a one-sized-fits-all disease.  When someone asks a question online, they can get 20 different answers.  With a variety of answers, they can surely find one that works for them.  There is no educator saying, “you can’t do that.”

With talking to people online, you get to talk to people all over the world. When I went to the local support groups, they were put on by a local hospital.  Of course the educators leading that group would put forth the opinions of the doctors in that hospital.  I like to say that the DOC is like having over 100 different doctors answering your question.  You often read, “my doctor said …” in a discussion.

The right answer is what works for you, not what works for someone else.  Getting a lot of different opinions helps you find the right answer.

“This post is my April entry in the DSMA Blog Carnival.  If you’d like to participate too, you can get all of the information at http://diabetessocmed.com/2012/april-dsma-blog-carnival-2/“

Tomorrow is the last day for the Wego Health Activists Writer’s Month!  Please visit Wego Health’s Facebook page to see other Health Activists’ posts.

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4 thoughts on “Ideal Diabetes Support Group

  1. Kelly, I agree with you, wholeheartedly! I was T1D for 61 years before finding the DOC. I have learned much more online than I knew during those 61 years. I was so ignorant about diabetes until I started joining diabetes websites. Ignorance is not always bliss. Lol!

    Richard

    • Richard, I felt the same way. I was actually embarrassed at some of the conversations that people thought “everyone” knew something and I had no clue! You are right, ignorance is not always bliss!

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