I know most of my readers already know about the Ricki Lake segment on GMA this morning so I do not feel like I need to recap it here. You can read some great blog posts about it on the following blogs:
I am so very proud of each parent and each person with T1 diabetes that called and wrote to Good Morning America and Ricki Lake. Our voices were heard! Group Hug!!
Also, a huge thank you to Ricki Lake for making the correction on Facebook, Twitter, GMA Online and on the Joy Behar show. I'm not linking up to Joy because she totally blew it. Ricki gave a great apology and tried to set the record straight but Joy was totally rude and shut her down. UGH. Boo Joy! Go Ricki! It would be wonderful if she made the apology on national television -- the same platform where she made the mistake. :)
Now on with my post.
You see Ricki Lake is not the 1st person to perpetuate the misunderstandings of type 1 versus type 2. At least Ricki was caring enough to admit that she made a mistake. Hello HUGE ego OPRAH and your puppet Dr. Dumbass (oops - I mean Dr. Oz). You can read my post on Oprah and Dr. Dumbass here.
Even as a child with a parent with Type 2 I am offended by the misconception of EVERYTHING diabetes. I think we all know that Nate did nothing to cause his diabetes and although a lot of us T1 Mamas did pour sugar down our kids throats just for the fun of it <---- that did not actually cause Nate's T1. The truth is not all type 2 diabetics can diet and exercise their diabetes away either. My dad is T2 and insulin dependent and has been for 20 years. His might have been preventable at some point but by the time his was caught his insulin producing cells had been working so hard for so long they were KAPUT! Anywho - I just wish people would stop making diabetes such a negative disease.
Watch this great video by Joanne from Death of a Pancreas about what NOT to say to a parent of a Type 1 Diabetic -- it's both funny and educational. VERY FUNNY! I watch it daily for a good chuckle!
I mean really what do we have to do to truly RAISE AWARENESS? Diabetes doesn't have a cute pink ribbon or a fun slogan like 'Save the TaTas!'. Don't get me wrong breast cancer awareness is important to me. Helllloooo -- I have boobs and I have to say even after nursing 3 kids they still looks pretty good (without any surgical help - thank you very much) and I would like to keep them!! See - Breast Cancer is important to me!! I just want to figure out how it got to be so World Wide. I mean which pair of tatas got that ball rolling? They have one hell of a marketing firm. I mean who doesn't know what that little pink ribbon means?
Or how about the hugely popular Red Dress Campaign? How did they get all of those beautiful celebrities to wear those red dresses to raise awareness for Heart Disease? Again, I am not knocking this campaign. Heart disease is important to me as a woman and I am forever grateful that this campaign has opened my eyes to the risks that women have with heart disease. I just want to know how this disease became so glamorous?
I'll try to be PC on the next one.
AIDS. Really, I've actually never met anyone with breast cancer or heart disease (that I know of) but I have had friends/co-workers with AIDS. I would love to see an AIDS free generation by 2015 but how in the hell did AIDS become so damn trendy? I mean - seriously? Everyone knows about the Gap Red Campaign and I have seen countless celebrities speaking out and raising awareness on AIDS. How did that happen?
I have to say that on World Diabetes Day not one of my Facebook friends updated their status to acknowledge WDD (D-Peeps excluded from that statement) but good hell I was bombarded with 227 Facebook status updates acknowledging World Aids Day 2010 on December 1st. It really hurt my feelings. Why is it so cool to acknowledge World Aids Day but not World Diabetes Day? Can anyone answer that for me?
I'm almost done -
The last one is Autism Speaks. This organization has done a phenomenal job raising awareness and educating on Autism. I personally scoured their website searching for signs, symptoms, and ways to avoid an Autism diagnosis for Nate. I don't know why I was so concerned about him other than the fact that I knew from their campaign that 1 in 70 boys is diagnosed with some form of the disorder. Type 1 Diabetes was the furthest thing from my mind when Nate was a baby. I had seen countless celebrities speaking out and countless others giving THEIR opinion on what causes Autism. One of our nieces has Asperger's Syndrome so again I am very grateful for all of the media coverage, celebrity foundations and the celebrities bringing the disorder to light but again how did Autism become so media savvy?
Are there people out there like me? Mom's of children with Autism that are screaming at Oprah and Dr. Oz because they are misinforming people? Is all of the information I have wrong? I just don't know -
What I do know is that Type 1 diabetes doesn't get any of this kind of media coverage. Or when it does get coverage it is always lumped with type 2 as 1 big disease that is totally preventable, and diet and exercise will surely cure it.
Today the Diabetes Online Community totally rallied. We stood up and said - hey look at us and listen to what we have to say! We did it. I'm so proud.
I want that everyday. I want Type 1 Diabetes to be known. I don't care what you call it - - - Type 1 Diabetes - Juvenile Diabetes - The Sugar Diabetes - The Bad Diabetes - - - - (ok maybe not all of those) --- I don't want one more child to die because parents don't know the symptoms.
I don't want one more T1 child to hear that their diabetes can be cured if they eat right and exercise.
I don't want people ever telling Nate that he had anything to do with his diagnosis. These kids deserve better and so do the adults living with type 1 --- damn --- how hard is it?
We need One symbOl.
We need to unite.
We need to educate.
We need to be heard.
We need to raise awareness.
We need to find a cure.
We need to fund a cure.
I mean seriously what is our symbol? A Blue Circle? A Red Ribbon? A Gray ribbon? Why can't we decide?
I love me some Nick Jonas but beside seeing him (in a video) at JDRF functions I don't really see him out there. I need some big celebrities in pretty dresses, sporting catchy type 1 logos & catchphrases on their t-shirts, I need one symbol, and I want all 419 of my Facebook friends to update their status about WDD on November 14th EVERY YEAR until we have a cure. I want the media to get it right!
I don't want Nate to EVER be ashamed or embarrassed by his diabetes. My goal is to raise awareness and educate so that Nate never has to fight these battles. I want more than anything a cure for my sweet boy but until I get one I will stand up and fight until the day that I die to protect him.
God gave me this special little boy and I NEVER question why -- I know why. I love him and I will care for him to the very best of my ability but God knew that when he gave this baby boy to me that I would FIGHT for him. I will fight for your children with type 1, I will fight for the adults living with type 1 --- I will fight! I am a fighter and I will not give up. No, I'm not a famous celebrity, I don't own a sexy red dress and I will never be on Oprah but I will do everything in my power to raise awareness and educate, educate, educate!!
Now - who's with me???????????
Amen sister. I'm fighting, too. I'm in. Always!
It totally irritates me, too. I do t to take anything away from these other diseases.... But come on! What about us???? Why is it that no one knows how serious it is? Why does no one get it? And you're right... Grey ribbon? Blue circle? I need to know people! I need to accessorize!!
Maybe it's up to us. PWD's and D Mamas ans Papas. It's OUR disease. I'm ready. Let's DO this.
(and I totally laughed at Dr Dumbass! He and O are like the Dynamic Duo of ignorance and ego!)
I agree. I also agree with Hallie that it's up to us to decide what the symbol is - then all of us use it...and don't feel frustrated or ashamed to educate.
We have people in our family who have battled breast cancer and each of them have acknowledged that it was tough, but nothing compared to the lifelong commitment to treating diabetes.
As for the red dress campaign I say it's about time that we actually look at what kills more women and make women more aware of heart disease rather than always worried about breast cancer which is much less prevalent.
I think that the other major issue is that there are too many places to raise funds for t1d mostly the ADA and JDRF so people get mixed messages from those two different groups, too. JDRF sells the idea of an artificial pancreas being a cure and the ADA promotes a million cook books about how to manage your diabetes through diet.
So, it's up to us - where do we go from here? I'll back your ideas as I am sure that you have all of our children's best interest at heart as they're sitting in the same boat as Nate.
Thanks for writing such an honest, but hard post, too!
Great post Laura. I am 2000% IN.
I agree...one symbol...and a celebrity. I read one of Wil's posts recently that stated the ADA will not embrace the blue circle and that has been a major baracade in unifying all of us...although I do get that the ADA is more type 2 geared.
Wonderful post Laura! Absolutely fantastic! I am 1000% in!!!! You know who can do all this - WE CAN! I totally believe we can harness our energy and our drive and our passion. WE can promote the blue circle and WE can call celebrities and WE can do it. We just need a plan.
I'm done with ADA personally. I just got the biggest catalogue of crap from them - honestly - cheese slicers? wrapping paper? Are we in 5th grade or something? I was so disappointed I wanted to cry. And blog about it. I say WE do it together - all of us D Moms and Dads.
How do we get a chat together online that lets us all participate and brainstorm and get something going? Much like the DSMA chat on Wednesday nights????
Great Post! But now the hard part . . .everyone says I am in but there has to be mroe . . .there has to be action, there has to be a leader . . .there has to be news media . . .this post needs to be seen everywhere so someone somewhere will step in and help in those departments. . . it will probably be a grass roots effort but it can be done . . .Put the DMom heads together along with the non DMoms who love the DMoms and T1's and lets get a plan!! . . .it may be a slow process but it has to go to the next level . . .
What do breast cancer; heart disease; AIDS; and autism have in common? They are perceived as major threats to the general population. Women, half our population, fear breast cancer and heart disease. AIDS is scary because so many people are out there having sex. And, autism seems so common, and all of us our afraid of our kids getting it. And, with so much else to worry about out there, people simply aren't worrying about their kids developing diabetes. I think it takes people viewing something as a threat to them personally before they are actually going to spend time making themselves aware of it. That's why JD lacks the "star power" of some of the other health issues out there. That being said, a creative advertiser can put any issue at the forefront. Maybe if we could just hire on the people that come up with those cool Target ads.
I'm in! Sure we see Bret Michaels talking about diabetes, but we need him and Nick Jonas, Tommy Lee, and Hallie Barry to bring attention to TYPE 1, not just a general sweep of the word diabetes.
I agree, we need to get something put together and out there before having Diabetes is as common as having Cancer, Heart Disease or AIDS.
I am all in to help you out! It has been something I have thought about too, but I never know where to start.
Just my opinion but I say we go with the blue circle! No ribbon. I want us to be different. The blue circle fits perfect. Just for Type 1.
And there should a red circle for type 2. I say that since the ADA is red and a bigger supporter of Type 2 then Type 1. There certainly needs to be two different symbols for the two different types of diabetes. Maybe that would help people distinguish between the two a little better.
You have 419 facebook friends?!!!? I only have 53....pathetic.
And Tommy Lee's diabetic????
Talk about getting hit with the stupid stick!
As bad as this may sound, I get SO sick of all the other diseases having the popular stigma and diabetes is swept under the so called rug. I'm down with the rockin' slogan and single symbol.......maybe it should be a giant single drip of clear liquid "Clear out Diabetes".
Just a Mom
I AM a wife.
I AM the mom of 3 wonderful children.
I AM my son's pancreas.
The information provided on this blog is from our personal experiences with Type 1 diabetes. Because something works for us does not mean it will work for you.
Please consult your doctor if you have any questions or concerns about your health care options.
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