When people find out you have diabetes, hopefully they are respectful and considerate. But that’s not always the case. People often, with good intentions, end up saying something infuriating or ridiculous. And, well-adjusted person that you are, you probably gently explain once again that you actually can eat that.
But after a while, you may be tempted to reply with a little more sauce. Perhaps you want to send a message loud and clear that today IS NOT the day you want to listen to someone who’s not a doctor explain diabetes to you. Well, we’ve got 12 ideas that may do the trick!
12. For your friend who’s heard of a cure…
“Oh? You heard a cure was right around the corner? I’ll DEFINITELY expect that soon…”
People with diabetes have been promised cures for decades, and after a while you learn to treat news of the latest breakthroughs with a grain of salt. We are definitely looking forward to a cure, but let’s just say we’re not going to cancel our prescriptions any time soon.
11. For the coworker who is convinced you should eat more fruit…
“It’s the good kind of sugar, you say? And here I thought carbs were carbs this whole time!” (Facepalm)
It’s up to you if you want to then patiently explain about carbohydrates and glucose or if you’d prefer to wander off muttering, “I guess I don’t know anything at all about life…”
10. When your Facebook friends share vacation pictures…
“Eh, Hawaii looks fun, but I decided to blow my vacation fund on life-saving insulin. To each their own!”
There’s nothing wrong with your friends going on great vacations, or buying expensive shoes, or paying for fancy coffee every day. You just have different priorities is all… like survival.
9. When someone is willing to share their life-changing diet advice…
“Oh I DO want to hear your weight loss advice. Don’t spare any details!”
Aren’t regular weight-related conversations with your doctor enough? Nope, apparently not. Your new unsolicited best friend has a bead on a foolproof weight loss scheme that doctors won’t tell you about… sigh. Perhaps instead of making a withdrawal from your limited patience fund, grab that person by the shoulders, open your eyes wide, and whisper in their ear, “Where have you been hiding?”
8. When someone without diabetes knows EXACTLY what you’re going through…
“You sometimes have low blood sugar too? That’s VERY interesting.”
With the very best of intentions, people may want to share their experiences with hypo and hyperglycemia (listen carefully to see if they know the difference). We appreciate folks trying to show support, but feeling tired and having a life-threatening low aren’t exactly the same thing.
7. For someone trying to flirt with you by asking about your diabetes
“Sorry. You’re not my type.”
Your would-be love interest may or may not understand your joke, so be sure to laugh hysterically on the inside as you make your exit.
6. When the pharmacist asks if you’re paying with debit or credit…
“I thought I’d just hand over my firstborn child and get it over with.”
Because, you know, drug prices…
5. When someone says it could be worse…
“You’re completely right. I mean, what if I were one of those people who blurted out the first thing that popped into their head?”
This one has a lot of potential for melodramatic customization. Try changing it up with, “What if I were one of those people who…”
- deals with uncontrollable flatulence?
- drives slowly in the left lane?
- actually enjoys kale?
- cooks fish in the break room microwave?
4. When they bring up the relatives with diabetes…
“Your aunt has diabetes? THANK GOODNESS! I thought I was the only one!!”
Proceed to ask for that relative’s personal information so you can contact them right away and see if they’re interested in being your daily diabetes mentor.
3. When they’re curious about what you did to get diabetes…
The setup: You walk into the lunchroom where a coworker is eating popcorn. You begin to check your blood sugar, and your coworker strikes up a conversation…
“You have diabetes?”
“How did you get it?”
Slowly turn around, raise eyebrows at their popcorn, “From popcorn.”
This can also be highly modified. Perhaps you “got” diabetes from:
- Working out too much.
- Not eating Wheaties.
- Kale. Who knew?
2. When you don’t want to explain anymore…
“So you can’t eat sugar, right?”
(Nod seriously). “Right. I can’t eat sugar because my body doesn’t produce insulin. Some people can’t produce tact. We’ve all got challenges.”
This works best with total commitment to deadpan seriousness.
1. When someone doesn’t recognize what your insulin pump is…
“Oh this is how my parole office keeps track of me. They don’t want to make the same mistake as last time.”
Then laugh, clap the person on the back, and walk off with no further explanation.
We hope some of these made you smile! We know that most people mean well when they ask about diabetes, but that doesn’t mean you can’t sprinkle in a little good-natured sarcasm now and then. After all, being too serious causes diabetes, right? Keep smiling, friends!
Katie Taylor started writing in 5th grade and hasn't stopped since. Her favorite place to pen a phrase is in front of her fireplace with a cup of tea, but she's been known to write in parking lots on the backs of old receipts if necessary. She and her husband live cozily in the Pacific Northwest enjoying rainy days and Netflix.