I’m Done with the Mis-information and Bullying! Are You In?

DoneIn the wake of many of the responses and messages I personally received in the last few days; a thought has come into light that we should explore.  When it comes to diabetes, and not only what the media portrays, but in our everyday lives (and the lives of our kids), are we being bullied?


Be careful as the word has a huge black cloud over it.  But that question remains and needs to be asked, if some of the things that have happened in our lives were switched ever so slightly; what would the world’s response be?

If kids were made fun of for their religious belief, what would be the reaction?
If movies portrayed other disease as they have diabetes, would there be an outcry?
If schools resisted managing children if they were terminally ill the way some fight what we ask for our kids, would the media stand idly by and not report it?
If media continually ‘got wrong’ the facts of one form of a disease vs. another with a similar name, would those suffering with the two disease say nothing?
If people were suffering with life threatening conditions, would the world stand by while it was stated and written that it was their own fault?


So why is it different for us……and that is the collective ALL OF US?

This is a very serious issue and really the only reaction has been talk with little (very little) action as a unified diabetes world.  The differences, the stereo-types, the misinformation, and the nonsense; stops now.

We do not need to change the name of any form of diabetes, we need to stand up and be counted.  We need to stand up and educate this world once and for all.

Here is something that each and every diabetes organization, company, foundation, group, and individually can stand behind.   I call upon every diabetes entity to give/send/supply me one name, JUST ONE, of someone from your company, organization, group, hospital, center, foundation, and or yourself; who can discuss this issue and how best to educate the world on the differences in diabetes and what it means to live with it.

We also need one ad-agency-executive-type who will help us create the campaign pro-bono (we can speak to a company about paying for the printing).  WE NEED THIS COMMITMENT.   Gladly we will list the logos of every organization small and large that are part of this effort (or perhaps we will list none at all; to be discussed) and of course the ad-agency and any companies laying out money will be credited. 

Time commitment will be a minimum (we all have much to do in our every day lives); perhaps two conference calls led by the ad agency, who will undertake this project; a course of action (radio, poster, TV) enlisting everyone who has an interest; and implementation to place posters, releases, and disperse information everywhere and anywhere.

I’m as tired of nothing getting done as the tactics being taken about and against people who live with diabetes, all forms, period.  This is not about who will do it, this is about who will choose not to.

If you agree, We need you to play an active role and ask that you pass this along to everyone who needs to be involved and anyone who wants to get involved, have them reply here so everyone can watch it grow.  Names of people who want to be involved can be emailed to me at karlya@optonline.net; place in the subject line Operation Diabetes Outreach.  We should have all of this by February 15th.  I will keep everyone posted. 

I’m tired of it and so should you; and something needs to be done.  I know so many care, but do you care enough to do something?   The time to act is now.  It’s put up or shut up time and if we choose to shut up and do nothing; than our voices should never be asked to rise again on this subject.

You in?

I am a diabetes dad.

Visit my Diabetes Dad FB Page and hit ‘like’.

Are There TOO MANY Diabetes Days?

I’m all for education and I have to admit that one would think that the more days having to do with diabetes, the more education there is about the disease…..right?  Well maybe not.

Diabetes Awareness Day, Diabetes Awareness Month, T1 Diabetes Awareness Day, Diabetes Blogger Day, Diabetes Alert Day, Diabetes Advocacy Day and actually the list goes on and on.  I was speaking to a reporter friend of mine and she told me that she gets more press releases about the different ‘diabetes days’ than any other disease state. 

I asked her if that was bad?  And she said that it is a difficult position to be in as it means she has to choose which ‘diabetes day’ is not only important but which one would be important to her readers.  She said it is really way too much. 

As I spoke to some of the many people I know who are involved in the diabetes community a common thread-of-an-answer came back to me.  Many people in the diabetes community have a cause or aspect that they feel is important and they think it just as important to let people know about that aspect.

But is that okay to be so diabetes-specific rather than seeking the bigger solution of educating the population as a whole with one centralized messaging?

As I stated, one would think that the more opportunity to get the word out there the better but my reporter friend had this to say about that (paraphrased): Ever hear the old story about a kid talking to his mother about mother’s day and the child asks “when is kid’s day?”  to which the mother responds ‘every day is kids day’?  Everyday at a newspaper cannot be given to diabetes awareness, or at least the amount of days we are asked to publish something, and with so many choices about diabetes–there can be, and is, no unity in the messaging that diabetes advocates crave. 

Wow.  This was an eye opener for me.  So I present it to you the diabetes community…..what do you think?

I’m a diabetesdad.



The Worst Kind of Diabetes is………

You Have a Job to do.

Diabetes Awareness month is November. 

We’re not going to wait.   Too many are getting it wrong now, today.  Do something today that could have an impact on Diabetes Awareness Month for 2012.  Ready?

The worst form of diabetes…….is getting it wrong.   Find a newspaper in your area and either email or send a letter.  Here is the copy of my actual letter that I sent to Mr. Fred Groser, Publisher of Newsday, here on Long Island; and I also sent to the Vice President of Editorial Services for Cablevsion—it took me 7 minutes and 37 seconds to do both.  If needed, take mine and tweak/edit as needed……but do it.

Dear Mr. Groser,

My name is Tom Karlya and I am an online writer about diabetes (www.diabetesdad.org and www.dlife.com/diabetsdad), active in many diabetes causes, and probably most importantly; I am a father to two children who live with Type 1 Diabetes everyday.

 As I’m sure you know, November is Diabetes Awareness month and I, along with thousands of people across the nation who are touched by this insidious disease, are writing to our local media to ask that should you run any stories about diabetes; PLEASE make sure you ‘get it’ right.

When referring to Type 2 Diabetes designate it as such; and the same with Type 1 Diabetes, or Gestational Diabetes, or to whichever form of diabetes you are referring.  There is so much misunderstanding and confusion about diabetes, help us educate the public to understand fully by being specific where needed.

Thank you for your time.  You can contact me directly or feel free to reach out to the Diabetes Advocates at info@diabetesadvocates.org; their website is www.diabetesadvocates.org; they will be glad to answer any questions you have about the different forms of diabetes.  Thank you for your support during diabetes awareness month.



Imagine if just 1000 people did this to two forms of media across the country this week getting ready for Diabetes Awareness month.  You can even cut and paste what I have given and tweak it. 

November is Diabetes Awareness Month and today …is…..is…..um……’help the media get it right in November’ day……..so let’s go.

If we don’t try to correct the problem, we cannot complain when they get it wrong.  Should you do it, send me a response to let me know the name of the newspaper and in what city and state.  This is an easy one, but one that can surely have an impact….let’s do it together.  ‘Don’t  do nothing’…….and do it today.

I’m a diabetesdad.