Do you tell people you are Diabetic?

I am a type 1 Diabetic. I like to tell friends, family and co-workers I am Diabetic in case I have an emergency. I have had scary lows and few times didn't get symptoms. A couple times it happened at my work place and while I was able to treat myself it was comforting to have someone with me who knew what was happening to me. My husband things I tell to many people, he doesn't think I should tell people. I don't understand how he could think this and it really upsets me because he actually fights with me about it. I was just wondering if other Diabetics out there are in this situation and do you tell your co-workers and bosses? Thanks!


I don't get type 1 diabetes a secret. My bosses and co-workers have known for many years. Big surprises from a type 1 diabetic having a low is no fun for anybody. I have no idea what you can say to a spouse who wants you to keep it a secret.

I think he thinks I am too dramatic about it or that I just want sympathy from people. Actually I don't think niether is true, I just want people to know the symptoms I have when I am low or high and how to help me should I need it. Plus it is a huge comfort to know that people around you know you have Diabetis and if something happens to you they can help you sooner then later. I am taking a CNA class which I will finish at the end of this month. I am going to see about a job Wed and I told my husband I was going to tell them about my Diabetis and see if they'd make accomodations for me for dinner time so that I can keep my schdule. I will be working the 3-11 pm shift. Anyway I have always been honest and upfront from the start with my employers and co-workers. I wonder if my husband is worried they won't give me the job if I tell them? This is a health care job, should I stick to my policy of disclosure or what until they hire me? My husband fought with me over this tonight, it isn't uncommon for us to argue about my Diabetis. Everytime I talk about my fears or feelings it leads to an arguement. I can't possibly be the only one this happens to. I just don't know what to do, I am getting to the point where I don't want to talk to him or my family about it anymore.

I probably would not tell a prospective employer (for fear of not getting hired; once you’re hired they have to accommodate you) but once you work somewhere, yes, the responsible thing is to let your coworkers know for the exact reasons you mention. Now, for a LONG time, I didn’t tell people. I didn’t want to be seen as different or incapable of doing my job. But I’m getting a little more open now and casually letting people know here and there. I know it’s the responsible thing to do. Last year, I had a bad low while alone in my office. It freaked me out because I was almost to that point where I couldn’t help myself.

Thanks! I think I will wait utnil they hire me then I will tell them. I only really need accomadated for dinner time, I just want to try and eat at the same time each evening. It could be right after the residents eat I am fine with that, I just need to plan. The only other thing I would need them to accomadate me on is an evening snack, proabably around 9:30 that is only if I need it. Otherwise I just want people I work with to know I am type 1 in case I have an emergency or need help. Thanks again for your input!;)

I don't go out of my way to shake their hand and say "hi I'm Marcia and I'm diabetic" lol but I have no problem telling people. Otherwise I have people trying to feed me, I would have people who wouldn't know what to do if I crash, I wouldn't have the interesting information about diabetes that I do (I learn from every conversation).

My first week of school I do my safety talk with my 7th graders. By the time we are done they actually think diabetes is no big deal, just another procedure. I've had so many kids come up and share their family stories or say "Mrs. Skidz, I am, too". We turn it into a normal, everyday thing. I hope that someday they might meet a diabetic and have a more open mind, consider dating them without prejudice, treat them as normal and accepting, let them participate in a full and meaningful way in an activity REMEMBERING ME and how I showed them I was a full action PERSON :)

Oh well, good luck. I don't know if he's embarrassed or if there is an extra issue there but you do what you feel comfortable doing.

I agree with prospective employers. Not everyone is open minded. Let them hire you for you and your skills and then you can make arrangements later for accommodations.

Joyful days.

This is discussed here a lot, but I remain firmly on the YES side of the divide.

One important point; DO NOT DISCLOSE TO PROSPECTIVE EMPLOYERS. Even if they don't care about the health issues, small companies may wonder how it will affect the health insurance plan.

There are two reasons to disclose openly. First is my safety. You should normally have someone around that can assist in places you spend a great deal of time, such as work. Second, I feel that if we as Type 1s do not do our part to educate, there are a lot of lost chances to help the non-diabetic world understand what Type 1 really is and how it affects lives. Knowledge is power.

And, wouldn't you really want your coworkers, friends and family to understand that you are not drunk or wacky when blood glucose levels fall to the dark side?

I usually tell people. Everybody at my job pretty much knows as I showed them my DF "centerfold" from the April '11 issue. Right now, I have a new boss who may not be aware of it (although it would be interesting to find out if she's been "filled in"?) but we are so busy it hasn't come up yet.

I tell people. In fact, I'm trying to work out how I'm going to approach telling my students this fall. I'm going to be a TA, teaching freshman composition at the university, and I'm going to be very careful with my blood sugar as I will be standing in front of class for an hour and a half twice a week (times two classes--three hours/day, twice a week) and someone in the class is going to know enough to tell me to test or eat my jellybeans.

I've always been very open. Part of it was the circumstances of my dx--Mom missed a party at church because I was in hospital, and Dad was out of town, and my littlest sister was only fifteen, so the church helped with meals and stuff. I still have a card the primary sent me while I was in the ICU. I tell people at school, mostly because I'm in creative writing, and it comes up in my writing a lot (especially when I'm doing cnf (creative non fiction). I test in class--I have injected in class when it was necessary.

If it comes up it comes up, if not I don't force the issue.

I keep it to myself. I am 3 1/2 years into T1(got it at age 59)and other than my medical professionals, I have told a total of 2 people, one sister, and a good friend who stays at my place from time to time. Occ Health at work knows about it, my endo wanted me to at least inform them. I keep very tight control, and have not had a low that I could not handle myself. If that ever changes, I will have to reconsider. I want to continue to be the same old "healthy" Sue for as long as I can pull it off.


Like some have said here, I don't go out of my way to tell people in general. If they happen to notice my pump or the supplies I carry with me and ask about it then fine, but it's not something that's first out of my mouth. I tend to keep my business as just that, my own business. I do have a couple of people at work who know. Of course my family and close friends know.

I haven't had to deal with possible employers, but I don't think I'd tell them until hired unless directly asked about it or health issues in general. Correct me if I'm wrong but, I believe that those kinds of questions are prohibited by law. I can't say for sure, but I thought I read/heard somewhere those types of questions in an interview or application are a big no-no.

Thanks when I talk to the hiring manager tomorrow I will not tell her about my Diabetis. I will wait and tell them if they hire me. Then I will tell only the co-workers that will work with me. One good thing about this job is I will be in a nursing home right next to ta hospital and will be working with RNs, LPNs and other CNAs so most of them will know what to do. I am telling those on my shift. Thanks for the advice!;)And you are right I talk about my Diabetis cause it is just my life and I do want to educate others. It also makes me feel safer when other people know I have it in case I go wacky as I like to call it. I already have a couple times slurred my speach during a low. I don't remember it but my family has told me I have done that.

Thanks! I am not going to tell the hiring manager tomorrow that I have Diabetis. I will wait and tell them if they hire me then only tell those people that I will be working with. Good thing about this job is I will be working in a Nursing home and will be right next to a hospital and will also be working with RNs, LPNs and fellow CNAs, these are the right kind of people to be working with if I have a low.

We talked about it again after we cooled off. He is worried that if I am too honest and tell them before I get hired I won't get the job. So I am going to wait until after the hire me and tell them. I will also tell the co-workers I will be working with all the time. I know it will come up anyway cause it is my life I talk about it you know. Anyway I will be working in a nursing home and also right next to a hospital, I will also be working with RNs, LPNs and fellow CNAs so these people should know how to help if I need it. It isnt' like I even have lows all the time, but I am going to be starting on the pump next month and I have heard that it is rough at first until you get the adjustments down.

I work for my husband and with another type 1 so we are pretty up front with what happens when we go low. I'd rather people know and obviously my husband supports me but I think that I am just lucky. Our accountant came in last week with a story about one of her colleagues who had gone low in the office and nobody had any clue what was happening and how to help. I think that is much more scary for people, because deep down most people want to help. I always wear my medic alert id bracelet, and my colleague has a pump which is visible to all of us, so there is nothing hidden.

I only tell people if it gets brought up somehow (like someone sees me checking myself or if an angry diabetic customer at work is complaining about having a drink switched) Otherwise, I don't talk about it that much.

Now my MOM on the other hand... she used to introduce me to my elementary and middle school teachers like this "Hi Mrs. ____ This is my son Tim, and he's a diabetic."

I love to let people know about my diabetes so that they can help me in emergency.

I tell Type 1 Son !!!! LOl My car tag has TYPE 1 on it . I dont know if everyone gets it . At work if I joke about it my boss told me just the other day " I have never seen someone so proud of their disease " I said "I'M A TYPE 1 SON " LOL after all it is a big part of us .

I think who a diabetic tells is a very individualistic thing. Some of us are more personal than others and that is fine. I think you at least need to tell your supervisor and anyone in your life that you will be spending a considerable amount of time with. The rest is your decision.

I often like to let a person get to know me before I tell them I am a T1D. I feel there is often a sizeable stereotype that occurs with T1D. I find letting people get to know me and see that I am not “disabled” and then telling them I am diabetic often breaks their sterotypes.

Employers are not allowed to ask about your health during a job interview, it is against the law. I would not mention diabetes during an interview as it is not pertinent and may put the interviewer in a very difficult situation. After you are hired your employer must provide “reasaonable accomidations” as per the American with Disibilities Act.