The Unintentional Conversation

Today is Day 3 of the National Health Blog Post Month

The NHBPM prompts are great and I’m thankful for them but I had a untentional conversation today that I’d rather share.

Today my dear daughter was selling Girl Scout Fall Product (nuts and chocolate) outside the local grocery store. I’m sure y’all have seen the Girl scout tables in the winter with the cookies – well here in CA they do the same for fall product. Good times.

My daughter invited one of the passerby’s to purchase nuts or chocolate. The gentleman inquired if there was a low sugar or sugar-free version of chocolate. My daughter said “no sorry but we have nuts” The man replied “no – guess they (girl scouts?) don’t like diabetics. Then he walked away.

My daughter and her fellow girl scout friend (who also walked with us for the JDRF Walk To Cure Diabetes) looked shocked and my daughter a little hurt.

The man had walked over to a group of tables to enjoy his Starbucks. I told the other girl scout mom I was going to go tell him what he had said was hurtful to my daughter. The other mom suggested I not and I considered not walking over but seeing my daughters face pushed me forward.

I approached the man who was reading something on his phone. I apologized that the Girl Scouts do not offer a sugar-free chocolate product. The man waived that away and simply said “Its normal – hard to find a low sugar or sugar-free desert.”

I went on to tell him that the young lady who invited him to purchase fall products is my daughter and has diabetes. He shook his head and said “I shouldn’t have said that. It wasn’t necessary and the girls don’t need to hear it. I’m sorry”.

I was pleased. He got it. Then he went on.

My son was diagnosed with Type 1 when he was 18, he is 31 now. He uses an insulin pump. I’m not taking shots. I try my best with diet, exercise and oral meds, been 5 – wait 9 years now – wow time flies.”

Huh – that surprised me. Here I had pegged him as an angry recently diagnosed person with Type 2. He does have type 2 but I doubt all his frustration comes from his diagnosis. He has spent over a decade hating diabetes – not for him but for his son.

Yes I skipped the NHBPM prompt – but I just thought Id share a conversation that I hadn’t expected. We talked for a good 20 minutes about complications, which type is ‘worse’, what foods cause his sugars to spike more than others (rice btw), how many times he tests a day, and how his son struggled for a good deal of time managing his diabetes prior to getting a pump.

I fully expected an argument when I decided to approach the man. I was ready to berate him for his insensitivity. Turns out I received a lesson about making assumptions.

Post Script –

Have you done the big blue test today? Learn about it now HERE.


About Christina

Mom of 3 kids, all 3 have Type 1 diabetes - I blog to share stories. I am not a medical professional and my thoughts are my own. Please do not make changes to your medical care plan based on my stories - always consult your medical team. Hope you find something in my ramblings helpful and or amusing. You can find me on twitter @momof3T1s and on my Facebook page Stick With It Sugar. May all your dreams forever be bolus worthy.
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6 Responses to The Unintentional Conversation

  1. Chris Dean says:

    I love that you’re a Warrior with compassion! The fact that you approached him steeled for a “discussion” but gave him space to talk says so much about all the reasons I adore you

  2. Lyn says:

    You really are amazing. I hate to admit it, but I don’t seem to have any neutral ground. I either am extremely understanding with people or I completely fly off the handle. My 11 year old son was diagnosed on December 19th of last year, and I hope with time I will be able to handle things as eloquently as you do. I know you feel like you got the lesson here, but I want you to know that in sharing it, you are teaching others too. Thank you!

    • Christina says:

      It has taken nearly 6 years and a great deal of practice to learn how to react. I don’t usually fault people for being misinformed or ignorant of diabetes issues. I was until Feb 2007. I do fault those who should know better (i.e. Target lady). Glad you got something from the post. Hope we can schedule a meet-up soon since we are so close.

  3. Jenn says:

    I bet he was just as impressed with you for standing up for your daughter respectfully. Also, who knows, maybe there was someone nearby that overheard the conversation and now knows more. We never know who sees or hears what we do or say.

    (side note – fall Girl Scout items sound tasty)

    • Christina says:

      It really was a great conversation. The gentleman really misses Chinese food (rice spikes sugars). I was glad to hear that his insurance company allows him a good number of test strips to test frequently. I hear too many stories of how insurance companies restrict test strips for people with Type 2 diabetes. Thanks for taking the time to comment – means a bunch.

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