Monday, July 17, 2006

Diabetes pet peeves installment 2

6)When people assume that Steel Magnolias is the fate of all women with diabetes both before becoming pregnant and after. The other day I was talking to someone about having children and they started to reference the movie and I wanted to flip out on them, but politely explained that most women with diabetes do not go on dialysis at least not in their early 20s and do not die after having children. I'm not sure they believed me. Arghhhh...Like I don't know about the disease I've had for 20 years. Come on people, give me a little credit here.

Disclaimer: I actually really like Steel Magnolias, it's just the right combination of damn funny and sad, but as far as a representation of PWDs, not a fan.


Nicole P said...

I know the Steel Magnolias referencing can be annoying.

I do try to keep in mind that Steel Magnolias came out back in 1989 - nearly 20 years ago. When I discuss it with people, I use it as a way to explain how diabetes care has changed and advanced since the 1980s. How with tight control, often attained through pumping insulin and multiple blood glucose tests each day, women can have near-normal pregnancies with diabetes. The fact is, that in the 70s and 80s, the kind of control needed for near-normal pregnancy wasn't as achievable as it is now - so, relative to its release date, with regard to its portrayal of PWDs and pregnancy, it's not all that inaccurate. I do think, though, that the movie makes an excellent teaching tool to tell people about advances - and why more research and future advances are so important.

Nicole aka Fred said...

This is a very good point. I forget that it was nearly 20 years ago and looking back at the time when I was diagnosed (1986) I remember how much things have changed. I think that using the movie as a teaching tool is a great way to look at it. Thanks!

Kassie said...

The Steel Magnolias syndrome is a biggy :) So many women with diabetse I know who are pregnant or planning a pregnancy get comments from well meaning aunts or coworkers or slightly random strangers, comments that are based on an understanding of diabetes that comes from Steel Magnolias.

Just another 'teachable moment' as we campers like to call it.

But it gets tiring having to explain stuff to folks who refer to a movie for their diabetes knowledge :)

Nicole aka Fred said...

I was seriously about to write a post about "teachable moments" and turning my pet peeves into them. KAssie, get out of my brain!!!!