Teen Topic #8: Were you ever bullied or have social issues in regards to diabetes? If so, how did you handle them?

Laura (age 16)
I’ve never really been bullied about it, but sometimes I feel awkward checking in public and making noises with my insulin pump and stuff. I handled it by just getting over it. It’s something that I have to do to live.

Brandon (age 15)
Having diabetes has never really led me to having social issues or being bullied, and I would attribute that to my sense of humor, because I make jokes about my diabetes all the time and there isn’t much that is left for them to offend me with.  And if they’re going to use your incurable disease to make fun of you, they have no other way to be mean to you, and are just bottom line not worth your time.

Jessica (age 19)
In regards to my diabetes I don’t believe I was ever bullied, but rather looked at differently by people who did not know or understand. I felt that it was part of my duty as a T1D to educate them and most of the time this helped in changing their attitude and they became accepting of who I am. I think people who don’t know about diabetes are quick to judge based on the myths out there and that in turn leads to bullying. As T1Ds it is our job to educate people and help create change so that everyone can understand and be accepting and helpful when things get tough.

Claire (age 16)
I have never been bullied because of diabetes, most of my friends are incredibly supportive and even remind me to take care of myself. I did have some social issues when I first got diagnosed, at age 7. I didn’t get invited to birthday parties because the mothers of the other little girls didn’t want to have to “deal” with me. And to this day I still get weird looks, stares, and some of the strangest questions you could think of.

Luke (age 15)
I have been picked on about having diabetes.  I would just ignore what they said and move on because I knew that they were trying to bring me down.   My mom helped me out a lot by telling me people like that are usually unhappy about themselves and do things to people to make themselves feel better.  As I have gotten older, it bothers me less.

Ian (age 13)
Yes, I have. I try to educate them upon the matter, but they are more stubborn than a donkey and don’t listen. My health textbook even has wrong info. My school won’t do anything about it though, and thus, I don’t try anymore. I wish they’d do something. They won’t let me even fundraise for JDRF. When I ask, I get an eye roll, or, “maybe next year,” but that never has or will happen.

Ashley B.(age 14)
Oh yeah, I’ve been bullied about it. Mostly from complete morons who know nothing of the disease. In example, “You must be an animal because you’re diseased, like a dog.” Okay, yeah. Diabetes is exactly like rabies. Thanks for that. I quickly called them out on their ignorance, and they left me alone. I don’t really hide having to do shots or checking my sugar in public, because if you act ashamed of what you have, you’ll be more of a target. “Oh wow, look at them, they’re doing drugs!” “Yeah no I have a disease, idiot, I have to do this or I’ll have health complications later in life” Basically, don’t be ashamed of what you have, you didn’t ask for it, but that doesn’t justify people making a joke out of you.

Mercedes (age 15)
I have been called named before because of it and I am very socially awkward.  I don’t think it’s because of my diabetes but it is a possibility.

Allie (age 13)
I wasn’t ever bullied because of having diabetes, and I don’t think I ever will be because I tend to keep to myself and don’t tell anyone straight up about having the disease. They’d have to see me check my blood sugar or bolus for something in order to notice, and even then most people are very understanding.

Page (age 17)
I’ve never had any bullying problems with my diabetes. When I was younger I would go around my elementary school every year with the other few diabetics and we would talk about type one and what we have to go through and how the other kids could help. They were always really supportive and never said anything about it. As I’ve gotten older, I just stay quiet about my disease and not very many people know that I am diabetic.

Skylyn (age 15)
I don’t think I have ever been bullied for my diabetes. I am sometimes questioned but not really rudely; they were just curious.

Ashley C. (age 14)
I was never bullied really more kids thought I was that kid who was different and I had a pump so I was really cool.

 

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