Recently, a top college football player, heading to the NFL, informed the world that he was gay. I’m not mentioning much more about that situation because I do not want my point to be sidetracked. Those discussions are everywhere happening everywhere. It is a given that many people had many things to write and say during that time but my article today is completely different from this young man’s situation; but his situation made me think of something that has to do with our community.
Have you ever heard from people when a celebrity, or the child of a celebrity, becomes diagnosed with diabetes and they choose to share it with the world? DO you get emails, as I do, that sound sorta like this:
Did you hear about XYZ who announced he had diabetes, you should get him?
Wow, XYZ’s child was diagnosed with diabetes, they have money, and can really help you guys.
How great is it for ABC organization who now has XYZ as their spokesperson, now that they announced their child has diabetes.
I, for one, (and I know I am not alone in this feeling) do not feel good about ANYone who joins this community of people. I know that WE never wanted to, and I feel so sorry for anyone who ‘becomes a member’. I truly do.
I don’t have any desire ‘to get anyone’ to participate in the efforts of the DRI once they announce that their lives have changed. Now to be clear, I surely appreciate when ANYONE decides to join in any effort that helps the diabetes community. And surely over the years, people have become diagnosed and we have been contacted to provide both help and/or information; and that is different than what I am referring. So MANY do that ALL the time and is one of the greatest things about our community.
But back to the young man who plays football; and I guess for anyone who is newly diagnosed with any disease……..are they asked the same questions as we are asked by others? Were gay people sent emails by their relatives that there is a possibility of a new spokesperson for their community?
Perhaps I’m wrong in using this man’s situation as an example, because disease states are surely not what is happening here; but the amount of media attention that followed made me think of the question: Do others experience what we do when someone with any sort of media-worthy status announces that XYZ is now their life?
When someone with XYZ media-status is diagnosed with cancer, cystic fibrosis, MS, or any other disease; are those people asked by their friends, relatives, and acquaintances if they are ‘going to get them’?
I just find it a little strange; does it happen to you and what do you think?
I am a diabetes dad.
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