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Diabetes Blog Week – Day 1 – Share or don’t share?

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Welcome to the fourth annual Diabetes Blog Week 2013!

First topic up for the week is to write as if my diabetes healthcare team is reading.

My first thought is to freak out and not write anything at all! For fear of judgement if I’m not doing something right; fear of upsetting them if I wrote something bad about them or if I wrote about something I wasn’t happy about regarding my management; fear of them using something I wrote against me. I could probably carry on with the list of things I am paranoid of if they were to read my blog. However, I haven’t let that stop me from sharing my experiences of life with diabetes. I consider myself to be fairly selective in what I choose to share online. And my rule of thumb is: if it’s information I won’t share with the interwebz, it certainly won’t be information I will be willing to share with my healthcare team! Unless, of course, I think it’s medically important but too private or personal to share with the online community.

As we all know too well, there are always two sides to any story. Part of living with a chronic condition involves an array of medical appointments and lot of talking with health professionals. It’s all too easy to get caught up with the medical side of things and lose sight of living life itself. Diabetes isn’t the end of the world. Personally, I love reading about other’s experiences about life with diabetes. What they have succeeded in, what they have learned from their stumbles and how they cope with everything. I take comfort in knowing that sometimes I’m not the only who is in struggletown and that it is okay to ask for help. After all, support is what the diabetes online community is all about! There’s only so much support healthcare professionals are able to provide. It’s good to be reminded that there is more to diabetes than just numbers. And I think it’s beneficial for health professionals to be reminded of that from time to time too. Understandably, their job is about keeping us out of the red zones but wouldn’t it be nice if they knew what else there is to us apart from diabetes? The limited time they have with us in clinics also makes it hard for them to understand the delicate balancing act between diabetes and life that we go through on a daily basis. In that sense, I would be more that happy for my healthcare team to read my blog. To share in my triumphs and frustrations of living life with diabetes.

If I do write about my healthcare team, I make sure that no names are mentioned to keep their anonymity. Even if they did do something bad by me, they are still entitled to their privacy, just like I expect them to respect my privacy. Plus no one wants to get sued for defamation! I would also just weigh up as to why I am even writing about a negative experience with a healthcare professional in the first place. Is there something to be learnt from the experience that I could take away and share or am I simply being petty and unreasonable?

At the end of the day common sense should prevail when it comes to what you publish online. Simply because once it’s out on the interwebz, you can’t take it back.

This post was originally published on the Diabetes Australia – Victoria’s blog.

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Pancreatically challenged, diabetes advocate, PhD student and dietitian - working to positive changes within the diabetes community and healthcare setting. Although diagnosed at age of 19 with T2DM, the type of diabetes I have is under constant debate. Finally pumping as of March 2014.

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